BEST STRIP EVER!
I was honestly expecting the first comment to be FAAAAAAAAAAAACCCCCCCCCCCCCCEEEE!
Speaking of, anyone else notice she literally knocked his face right out of the panel?
Well, this is going into tvtropes.org right the hell now.
You got the date wrong.
It was 1 in the morning, and I was very tired. Fixed.
Sorry, didn’t mean to be rude. I just don’t have editing privileges myself.
All you need to do is sign up, it takes 2 minutes.
I really need to stop talking to myself.
until you get banned by one of the admins on a god-trip…
That was still an issue when you posted, but these days it’s thankfully much less rare, now that the surreal, self-absorbed Fast Eddie (who once removed some markup from the site just because the way it was being used personally annoyed him) has sold it and washed his hands of it. The fact that people seemed to love him always bewildered me. He was weird, arrogant, unhelpful when asked for advice on how to deal with changes he made that may not have been well-considered, and was in the habit of things liking removing all examples from a page because some of them (Not all) now had their own site section to go on. Also kept trying to find excuses to restrict or eliminate anime and manga content on the site, from his famous irritation at the Tsundere entry, to how the porn-wipe ended up working in practice.
This made my night. Well done.
ASSHOLE DOWN!!! I actually did the happy dance (slamma jamma mix).
Fuck Yeah!! ‘But Damn Time Willis!!
right on right on
Go Amber!!! Woo hoo!!!
I’m hoping that next strip, she rebounds off the ropes and then drops the People’s Elbow on him.
The readers champ laying the Smackdown on these Jebronis
I should have down that to my dad a long time ago.
SHOW ME YOUR MOVES.
You guys are just not playin’ ball.
Shoryuken was gonna be mine… Should have checked for the update earlier.
And the crowd goes wild…
7,000,000,000 Points!! (the whole room is buried in coins)
“I’ll touch YOU with my FIST”
Punching Dudes in the face is a recurring theme in this comic.
Wait, was that thing where Joyce says that “guys are strong” meant to contrast this?
I’ll pass a fist through your face!
You seem scared. Please don’t be. We don’t punch people in the face here.
Maybe you don’t but I’m doin’ it all day.
in the FAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACE!!!
It might be, but I’m horrified he might fight back next strip.
I’m more horrified me might do something worse.
Like sue for assault.
The case would be dismissed immediately. A jury would never side with him.
Dismissals are done by the judge on questions of law, not by a jury. A jury does not get to decide anything before discovery, examinations, proceedings and pleadings are through.
The U.S. court system is expensive. Everything short of clearly frivolous suits will set both parties back hundreds of thousands. Being able to pay a competent lawyer will heavily tilt the table, so at least the barrier for getting a “frivolity” ruling is rather high for someone with limited resources.
Since her father obviously has more money to throw around, he can basically end her college career with debts if he is so inclined.
Unless there is a restraining order in place already. That would indeed raise rather high barriers to make it past the discovery stage.
Quick rundown: we have a middle aged man, appears tall and reasonably athletic, and a physically much smaller girl. If he’s anything like Walkyverse Blaine there’s probably a record of physical abuse from the divorce, though we don’t know for sure. He’s in her dorm, between her and the door (yes, I actually went through some strips and checked)
When asked to leave, he responds by stepping towards her, yelling, and possibly referencing past physical confrontations. That’s when she decks him.
If he sues, she can claim self-defense. To get past that, he has to convince a jury that a reasonable person in those circumstances would *not* be afraid for their safety. Good luck with that.
In theory, yes.
In practice, he has to get a good lawyer, and stop paying the various court-ordered payments long enough that Amber can’t afford one. Then she flounders to produce a reasonable legal argument like this one, and loses. Because evil sucks like that.
Honestly don’t think Blaine’ll take that route, though. He’ll take the attack too personally to be happy letting the court system get the revenge for him. That will feel like chickening out.
Besides, there are three credible witnesses in the room that presumably would back up Amber’s position.
Also in theory, anyone that big of a dick also has a huge ego. Do you think he’ll publicly want to advertise that he got his ass kicked by his much smaller daughter?
For Blaine to press charges he’d have to admit, most likely to other men, that his daughter not only defied him, she also physically bested him. Blaine is pretty obvious a sexist POS and I don’t think his warped sense of pride would allow him admit that Amber laid a blow on him.
I’m much more worried he’s going rebound and take out his anger on Amber or Dina.
I wouldn’t worry about them too much. It isn’t just the mask that makes her Amazi-Girl, after all.
But, yeah, there’s no way this doesn’t get ugly in one way or another, but I’m pretty sure this is going to end up being a worse day for Blaine than for Amber.
yesss yes yes oh I love this.
yesss yes yes oh I love this.
ok some kind of formatting f-up, my apologies, no attempt to rectify it will be made, no sir!
huh… now that you mention it, Amber kind of does remind me of Amazi-Girl there.
But I always found the speculation about Amazi-Girl having a “secret identity” to be ridiculous. Why wouldn’t someone as powerful as Amazi-Girl bother with a such a thing? She would just be Amazi-Girl all the time. sheesh!
This brought on the image of Amazi-Girl shopping for groceries, walking in the park, and watching television; all in full costume (and taking a shower with the mask on).
I read all of that in Jessica Boone’s Chiyo-chan’s voice.
I think everyone here is over thinking the whole ‘legal ramifications’. Just because someone could do it doesn’t mean it’s in their character to do so. This is not a man who would admit to anyone that a woman floored him. Let alone his own daughter.
That is not to say there won’t be other ramifications to this.
Particularly as with his head having done a full 180 and his body looking still mostly perpendicular, there’s a good chance, she won’t be able to say anything.
*he won’t be saying anything. As in ever again.
“You are too much like your simper mother, touch her once and she quits.”
This pretty much confirms physical violence against Ambers mom.
Or child molestation against Amber.
Go ahead Mr. Korean mob flunky, take her to court. Juries LOVE child-molesters…And mobsters love guys who squeal just as a pathetic attempt to get out of prison even more…
You should sell the last panel as a full size print.
i’d buy it.
I’d buy seven.
I’d say I’d buy fourteen, but I really don’t have the space.
i’d buy many small prints of it and paste them all together and use it as wallpaper.
Hell, he should put it on t-shirts!
I’d buy thousands and wallpaper my house with them.
I support this!
This plan will result in Willis acquiring all of the money.
As of this strip, I am ok with this.
Willis you’re about to have a mob (i’ll take two)
I’m fairly certain that it would be the best selling product that Willis has produced to date. It just makes so many people happy.
I’d buy it as well. (As long as I can buy it via Paypal or something instead of via credit card.)
I speak for the entire fanbase when I say;
The next panel better be Amber making her dad tap out with a crippler crossface.
No no. She pins him down and Dina counts out
3! 2! 1! SLAMMIN’ AMBER O’MALLEY WIIIIIIIINS!!!
The count’s the other way around, Bobby Heenan. 😛
wow…I purposely counted it out so I wouldn’t do it wrong…how did that happen…
Who’re you kidding, the next panel is obviously a pseudo-cliffhanger shift to another scene.
A cliffhanger with a grappling hook?
She should totally submit him with a Boston Crap. Doin’ some sick suplexes
I want her to give him a fucking Tombstone in the next comic.
The finishing move of a child murderer? Okay…
Good thing wrestling fans don’t make up a large part of willis’s audience or this would get ugly fast 0_0.
It broke my goddamn heart when I heard what happened 6-7 years ago. He was one of my top five.
Let’s nip this in the bud and just call it the “Yes!” Lock, OK?
BRYAN OVER CENA AT SUMMERSLAM TOMORROW! LET’S HOPE SO! YES! YES! YES!
Where have all you other wrestling fans been this entire time?!
Always here. This just caught my eye. I..just…man, that whole case enveloped me so much. Not where I expected to see a reference.
Now does Blaine quit after one “touch?”
Dr. Rosenthal doesn’t.
That’s why he never touches himself
YES. AMBER FOR THE WIN. YOU ROCK, NOT JUST BECAUSE OF YOUR PHYSICAL STRENGTH, BUT BECAUSE YOU DIDN’T TAKE HIS BULLSHIT. THANK YOU WILLIS.
I don’t think anyone, not even Mr. Willis, could handle him not being punched for any more number of strips.
It’s hard to build up a tolerance to him not being punched.
I am wearing an Amber T-shirt and waving Amber flags while screaming GO AMBER. This girl gives zero fucks.
Honey Amber Badger gives NO fucks!
No Amber. You are the Badgers.
And then Amber was the badgers.
What if Amber was BEES?
She’d die after stinging him.
WASPS on the other hand… They can do as much damage as they want!
Not all bees die after stinging ya know.
No. BEES. http://www.scp-wiki.net/bees
Thanks for posting the SCP website.
goddamn goons. you get everywhere.
I’d argue that the opposite is true; she gave every fuck she could give into that punch.
She punched him so hard that there are no more fucks to give on that campus
As long as Joe is alive there are ALWAYS more fucks to give.
I was gonna say the same thing. Plus, with his dad conveniently giving a fuck to Amber’s mom, there would still be double fucks that could be given. Still, go Amber!!
No. Somewhere on campus, Joe just lost wood. Momentarily saddened, he has the strangest feeling that it was for a good cause, and all is as it should be. With a small smile of acceptance, he tips his hat to his lady friend and vanishes into the sunset.
YES. GOOD. THIS.
Also, I think Mr. Rosenthall would disagree (can we get him punching him as well?)
Can we get a line of people like that scene in Airplane?
I’ll bring the lead pipe
Dibs on the boxing gloves.
I call brass knuckles.
But who will speak Jive?
Barbara Billingsley, of course.
The Boobs Of Steel trope is well and truly put into play in the last panel.
HOLY !%*$ well i cant say that i did not see that coming.
Neither did Blaine it seems.
This is like PORN to walkyverse Amber.
So it is normal to find this particular strip arousing? Good. I don’t have issues then.
…Probably not, anyway.
Oh good, not just me then.
Ah, good. I’m not alone.
Now as long as Faz doesn’t join us, this won’t be creepy.
Dumbiverse Amber is apparently less tolerant of people who talk about fucking up her mom.
And Mike seems so sad about that…
It’s… It’s beautiful, really.
Also, while submitting this to the Crowning Moment of Facepunch Tumblr (because if anything applies for that title, this sure as hell does), I went and found the funeral strip.
I think these two are meant to be read together. http://www.shortpacked.com/2012/comic/book-14/01-deady-dearest/lastrespects/
It’s so, so beautiful. It was meant to be.
Thanks for sharing the link, Regalli. It does help better set the tone for this scene.
And for a brief, shining moment, all was right with the world.
If only Shortpacked Amber could see this.
It would be her wallpaper…
on her phone, laptop, desktop…and literally her wall.
She might make it into 7 t-shirts and wear one every day.
I swear to Pony Jesus, Willis, if this turns out to be a dream or in her head I WILL CRY ALL THE TEARS.
You better have brought enough tears for the rest of the class.
Mmmmm. Delicious tears.
Not a hoax. Not a dream. Not an imaginary story.
Well, okay, it IS an imaginary story, but fiction tends to be by default.
Not mentioned: sudden shifts to alternate universes, hallucination, telepathically implanted imagery… uh… okay I’m out of ridiculous alternate explanations. I shouldn’t get into the Silver-Age-comic-book-tagline-writing business.
Now we just have to hope there’s no negative repercussions >_>
That’s my fear! Especially since this scene is implying that he was still physically abusive with her mother in this universe.
That Faz has to live with this guy in this universe makes me pity him. And like, feel concern for his welfare. Not emotions I generally associate with the experience of The Great Faz.
Oh, there will likely be repercussions, since we are talking that Amber can be tried as an adult. Then again, if Mr. O’Malley has a restraining order on him from the divorce, coupled with witness testimony from Dina’s parents, she could get away with a drop kick or two.
Then again, I’m waiting to see Joe’s dad show up with Amber’s mom, and interfere. “Look at my hand, now back at me! What is it? I have it! It’s your testicles!”
Oh god, yes. Dr. Rosenthal may be a lover, but that doesn’t mean he can’t lay a beatdown on a motherfucker.
Wow he’s the old spice man
Seriously, in the US that’s not a clear-cut case that will be immediately cut in favour of the victim?
Reading all those comments engaging in hypothetical routes a trial could take was a bit uncanny.
Of course there’s negative repercussions. There was no way this scene was ever going to play out without negative repercussions of one kind or another, no matter what Amber did. The question is how severe and immediate they will be.
…I had not considered that. Things were only going to get worse from here any way it played out. I don’t know that this makes Amber’s response okay, but what response could have been? He’s stated that he can do as he pleases to her and her mother because neither can stand up to him. Even if he can’t accept a demonstration of how wrong he is, it’s something Amber needs to know she can do.
I wish it didn’t have to come to this, but the only way that might be possible is if Amber’s father was an entirely better person.
Well, this strip does indulge in fantasy, if less than the Walkyverse. In the real world there are WAY too many guys like Blaine and The “Justice” System does not do so well by their targets–and VERY few daughters/wives/girlfriends deal with their Blaine as AmaziAmber just did. So, this is a fantasy and Willis, Damn Him, CAN make this turn out how we’d like, IF he chooses to.
“This is an imaginary story. Aren’t they all?”
– ‘Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?’, Alan Moore and Curt Swan
AMAZI-GIRL TIME? NO, AMBER TIME!
KICK HIS ASS, GIRL
My thought exactly! Did somebody call for Amazi-Girl??? Present and accounted for!!
Amazi-girl may be immune to criticism… But Amber O’Malley is of irish stock!
Clap…clap….clap..clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap!
Chang, you can’t start a slow clap for yourself.
HOLY HELL YES!
“Blaine, looks like your daughter’s grown up to be a real…”
*takes off glasses*
She an (upper)cut above the rest.
We’ll done sir
Pretty sure it’s puts on sunglasses.
The moment was so cool, the sunglasses had to be taken off. Seriously, if you said it without taking them off, they would just explode.
As much as I have awaited this, the aftermath interests me twice as much.
I have to say…This better not be a fucking fake out.
Willis verified up-comments that it is not a dream or her imagination.
Man, seeing the full-on assholeishness of Blaine in person totally sold this moment to me way moreso than just hearing Amber’s word on it in Shortpacked.
Now, where’s Sarah and her baseball bat?
Who needs Amazi-Girl? Amber kicks ass on her own.
Honestly, I think she could have floored Sal AND Ruth with that punch.
But would she be able to handle BILLIE defending her women?
She was able to lift Billie on her shoulders and sprint away with her. I think she could take her.
But that was when Billie wasn’t fueled by girlfriend beaten up anger.
She was plenty angry at that particular moment. If I recall, Amber lifted her mid-punch.
I think a lot of Shortpacked! fans just squeed a little over this. I know I did.
As an aside, WTF Dina’s Mom & Dad? I get you’re a family of introverts who have issues with confrontation, but you’re really just standing there and letting this happen?
You can see them starting to get involved at the start of this strip as the relaization of just what’s going on finally takes hold, but I don’t think -anyone- was expecting Amber to just flat out facepunch the bastard.
Cuz she’s a stone cold badass like that.
It’s not necessarily just introversion – a lot of how Dina acts reminds me of myself when I was in middle and high school and less adapted to the world, and I’m on the veeeeery edge of the Autism spectrum. It’s possible that Dina and her parents are moreso on the spectrum, or something similar, than I am, and aren’t entirely sure how they should be reacting, or if they should be stepping in on something like this if he hasn’t physically hurt her.
Hell, it doesn’t even have to be autism. It could just be that they’re scared of him. He’s a big man, and they’re on the small side.
I agree that it doesn’t *need* to be autism to explain what Dina and her family are doing right now (autism doesn’t explain on own anyways because autistic people can be so different from each other,) but I’m Autistic and totally see Dina as being (presumably undiagnosed) autistic, and that tends to run in families.
(Shutting down when not sure what to do is totally a thing. If that’s what’s going on, should Dina/family start doing something it’s probably going to be a loud/meltdowny thing.)
I’m surprised that Dina’s mom made the comment in the first panel – she is better at picking up social cues than Dina is, but this kind of loud confrontation often makes people shut down. Even big mouthed types like myself.
I CAN DIE PEACEFULLY.
I CAN DIE DANGEROUSLY.
Live a dangerous life, die a peaceful death: asleep while driving in the Indy 500.
That panel felt so nice. I can sleep well tonight.
Panel 5 better be the most satisfying thing you have drawn. You REALLY did a good job at making Blaine the biggest asshole ever.
FUCK YEAH. All of the win for Amber. ALL of it.
(Deep Mortal Kombat voice) AMBER WINS, FLAWLESS VICTORY!
Also, am I the only one that just really loves Dina’s mom apologizing. It just is pretty nice to me. Especially after being shoved under his armpit.
I did not realize your dad would place us under his armpit. Haven’t you irish heard of soap?
That Irish Springs stuff has ladies popping out of it. Can’t be safe.
that really breaks my heart, slash I totally love it too. it’s like that moment that you realize that your folks can’t protect you from everything. dina’s folks can’t step in or do anything – that’s not their secret power(/s).
I am also someone cheering at the first panel. The understanding–the reevaluation of a previous action, and regret–it is sweet. To not be passively going through the motions of politeness and cowedness, but to /realise/ the depth of the situation (and what one has done, and to sincerely apologise for it). So very wonderful to witness.
Wish Joe gave Walkyverse!Amber an interdimensional viewer so she could see this moment.
Me, too. It would be amazing for her to see herself so young and so strong.
This is the hottest thing
I mean, her punch-pose boobs? PERFECT
Oh so satisfying.
Bout time. Amazi-girl would’vd been better though.
She couldn’t sailor moon the costume on.
Faz would spontaneously burst into flames from the friction of his thrusting, if she did a Sailor moon transformation.
AMAZI-GIRL IS IMMUNE TO CRITICISM, DAD!
WHO DO YOU THINK HAS THE HIGH SCORE IN PUNCHOUT!, DAD!?
I don’t care how many “Amber’s dad uses punch to legally contest child support” subplots it took to buy that punch. It will ALWAYS be worth ti.
I doubt Blaine would ever be willing to admit he got socked by his little girl, much less bring it before the court.
It would be to her benefit to press charges. Your roommate’s parents make good witnesses, and my well file charges against The Faz for sexual harassment. She has a better chance of taking him to civil court and demanding compensation for explicit emotional lifelong abuses.
Also where are amazagirls fans? people she saves can be her army.
Sadly, sexual harassment only LEGALLY exists when there’s a direct connection where one individual is using their power – like employment hierarchy or politics – to cause unwanted advances. Technically, Dina has no right to NOT be squicked out by Faz… but as a legally recognized resident of that room, she CAN have him expelled from the room by security. Same should apply to Amber and her father.
Now, if he touches her, she can probably file assault charges…
Now: FINISH HIM!
Kick a man while he’s down? It’s the best time.*
*Although I would like Amber to do so, it might give her father a legal case against her if she did kick him while he’s down and (technically) “helpless”.
With that neck snap, it might be (checks Indiana law) involuntary manslaughter charges.
Jesus! That was therapeutic!
May I have a .gif of that last panel?
GO AMBER! Woo!
Would the opposite of “DAMN YOU WILLIS!” be “BLESS YOU WILLIS!” or something else?
Well, whatever it is, that!
“ABSOLVE YOU WILLIS!” maybe?
“PRAISE THE WILLIS!”
Oh tell me he has a glass jaw. I want to see him unconscious in the next strip. That would be hilarious.
The problem with this is that then he wouldn’t leave without help. And I, for one, want him to (1) leave and (2) not receive any help.
I have a feeling that last panel should have said…
She didn’t spin enough.
Now, the million dollar question. Is he a big enough idiot to fight back when there are witnesses?
First comment (I think… maybe? Second is just as good) was reserved for something like this:
FUCK YEAH, GIRL!
Oh hey, Dina’s parents (or at least her mom) can actually talk!
Oh yeah, the punch is good too.
I just hope that Amber remembers that if you’re gonna fight a guy like that, you have to keep on hitting him until he is either unwilling to, or incapable of, fighting back. None of this “one punch and I prove my point and turn my back.”. Bastard will just get up and jump you. Put him DOWN for the duration.
Stomp him as soon as he hits the ground. Have Dina and her parents join in. And maybe if you promise Faz boobs he will join in too.
Amber gets into fights all the time these days. I’m sure she’s -more- than ready to lay as much of a beatdown on her father as he needs.
Hell, I can see Dina’s dad silently holding him down while she lays the boots into Blain, medium style.
You all sure Blaine’s not packing? This is America 2013…
Blaine:Hey Amber can i stay in your room?
So Amber is solving her domestic dispute through violence?
So Amber couldn’t walk away?
If you were in your shoes, being confronted by an asshole father who insults your mother, would you just walk away, or would you proceed to show him just how much of a little shit he really is?
*her shoes. Been a long damn day.
I’ve literally been in those shoes. I’ve stopped a man from beating my mother. I stopped my girlfriends mother from beating her. I stopped all of these without resorting to violence of my own.
If the worst I was being faced with was a small amount of irritating emotional abuse? Hell yes I’d just walk away. Easy.
And he’d never stop. Fun fact, a bully doesn’t stop being a bully until you do something about it. Walking away just makes him think he’s right, that you’re just a weak willed person. The best thing to do is lay him out flat. I speak from experience on that. Being passive doesn’t work all the time. Sometimes violence is a necessary solution.
Yes. Sometimes. But I’m not seeing that unending scenario you suggest here. She hasn’t spoken to this man in three years. He leaves, she gets a restraining order, it’s done.
I bet a lot of folks wish they could be in a place where they could easily dismiss emotional abuse as this merely irritating thing. A lot of readers have rightfully skipped these past few strips with Blaine because his words here hurt them too much, because they cut too close. But sure. Truly you are a role model.
Is punching her father best for Amber right now? Who knows. We’ll see. But you sitting here being superior about it really cranks me.
Yes, I think emotional abuse as portrayed here constitutes a small amount. I’m sure the fictional past of the character is much more involved. But right now? He isn’t physically restraining her. She’s not trapped in this scenario. Escape from the abuse is very easy to achieve.
I made no comment about emotional abuse in general. Only what is portrayed here.
The amount of emotional abuse displayed here has kept several readers from reading this strip for a week, as I have stated.
You should tell them this has been a “small amount.”
Actually, no, you shouldn’t, because you’re really making me angry.
I wasn’t going to say anything, but this just isn’t sitting well with me, and it isn’t ever going to.
Saying that this is only a “small amount” of abuse, or frankly that there is even such a thing as a “small amount” of abuse is offensive bullshit. Being that dismissive of any kind of abuse, however “severe” only serves to shame the victims and embolden the abusers.
The moral superiority of not resorting to violence means precisely diddly squat when you’ve been beaten into the hospital when your abuser now has all that much more time and attention to spend on his or her other victims, who are now all that much more afraid to talk to the authorities.
This person (I refuse to call him a “man”) has been asserting physical and verbal dominance ever since he showed up, and just flat out admitted to hitting Amber’s mother (also bear in mind that abusers almost never stick to only one punching bag) while looming over her in her personal space. She has every reason to believe that he is about to get physical and has every right to defend herself.
Its only a small amount of abuse? Does it make a difference to you if someone ‘just stabs someone a little’? Blaine is out of order here and has been all week (and most of Amber’s life btw). He’s been emotionally controlling, claimed several times to ‘own’ Amber by implying that her continued financial existence is in some way as a result of his better nature, rather than a court order forcing him to fullfill his responsibilities. If you really have been through the sort of abuse Willis has portrayed here, you’ll know that abuse doesn’t have to be some sort of grandiose-arch-villain-moustache-twirling fit of violencel, but that it’s more commonly made up of a thousand little evils repeatedly stabbing at someone.
As to the suggestion that she was in some way morally wrong to resort to violence? That the only right thing to do was to walk away?
Only a Sith deals in absolutes.
He’s standing between her and the door, getting way too close for comfort. Why does it matter what you would have done in the situation? Amber’s not you. It’s not your story or your character. This is whatever Willis wants it to be.
Well, that certainly wasn’t my intention. Apologies if I upset you.
I understand what you’re saying, and I agree, violence is never the answer unless as a last resort. Yes Amber could’ve walked away, sure. But I don’t think it’s right to judge her for making the choice to resort to violence. From the way her dad acts, it’s clear she’s been bullied by him most of her life, and she has a very strong sense of justice that is likely wrapped up in that. To her, this may be right, or it may be year of pent up aggression, or it may be both. It doesn’t make her corrupt or weak to do this, humans are more complex than that, not everyone has enough reason to just walk away and allow one’s self to be stepped on.
Reading this last comic gave me a genuine, honest-to-god panic attack.
I didn’t realize until now that I apparently have PTSD from my abusive father. It was like somebody dumped a bucket of icewater over my head. I’m still shaking. Not your fault, Willis, but also not how I was expecting to start my day. Jesus.
I apologize for what I have done to you!
As I said: “as portrayed here”. A major aspect of what you are advancing is based on extrapolation or assumption. And yes, as someone who grew up in a physically abusive environment, I would certainly say that there is a massive difference between someone saying the things said and done specifically in this comic and someone physically beating the shit out of another human being to the point of hospitalization. They are both horrible, but one is escapable. One is not. Do you hold them equal?
Understand, I’m not dismissing the abuse. Amber is the victim here. Amber removing this man from her life makes perfect sense. But physically attacking someone? I’m not seeing that warranted in these circumstances.
There’s an idea being thrown about a bit that walking away from an abuser is somehow weak, or conceding victory to the abuser. The idea that abuse must be met with a violent response, and that anything else is a failure is a misconception of a high degree. Amber is old enough to remove this person from her life. That’s the path an adult (or near adult) takes when someone is a corrosive force. Violence is a last resort to be used in self-defense. Not to win an argument. Not to prove a point. You do not hit someone because they say things or have done things in the past that make you angry.
Let’s be absolutely clear. She did not (entirely) hit him because he hurt her feelings. He was presenting an imminent physical threat. He was in her personal space, physically looming over her, and admitted to beating her mother in front of witnesses by way of threat.
Should she have waited for him to throw the first punch, starting off the inevitable physical confrontation as a disadvantage? No, that’s right. You want her to walk away, giving him a free shot at her back.
Best case scenario in walking away? He loads up his trunk full of “his stuff” out of “his closet” and leaves, secure in the knowledge that she’s just like her mother and he can come back any time he feels like pushing somebody around. A restraining order would do jack and shit. She’s property, and property doesn’t have any legal standing.
I’m sorry not everybody has the strength and moral fortitude to do nothing and accept their abuse with quiet dignity so as to not inconvenience their abusers. I know it’s disappointing that Amber is so weak that she takes the easy way out, standing up to Blaine, not allowing him to re-establish the pattern on abuse that he obviously thrives on.
Once again, your response only works with a large amount of assumption (He will take her stuff. He will hit her in the back). You’re also engaging in weird logic regarding restraining orders. he violates it, he goes to jail.
Cutting an abuser out of your life is NOT doing nothing. It is absurd that you even suggest that. Restraining yourself from physical violence is NOT weak. The suggestion that it is is horribly sad.
The point of a discussion is to discuss the events portrayed. You’re telling me because it’s not my story I should not discuss it?
David Willis writes compelling characters and scenarios that are easy to get wrapped up in. He evokes strong empathy and emotion. Because he does this so well, we “believe” these characters to be “real”, and we discuss the fictional actions they take in their fictional world as if their actions were not preplanned by a storyteller. The fact that any of us can lose ourselves in the make believe world as if there was any kind of act or choice a fictional character could make is a good thing. It is what brings me back to these pages again and again, and I do not believe it is up to you to tell me I should not participate in this action.
It’s -her- fucking room.
And? Is he going to move in? Take her stuff? If he’s likely to do that, it hasn’t been shown.
She leaves, he leaves, she comes back. The end. If she wants, she can file a restraining order.
You know, I would not put it past him at all to take or vandalize her stuff. Just to demonstrate his ownership of her and everything she has. Especially when last strip specifically showed him going through her stuff without invitation and saying she shouldn’t have it.
Walk away? From her own room? leaving her abusive, assholic father with Dina and her parents?
It’s her room, and he will not go away. And in a much larger sense, it’s strongly implied in this scene that he hit her mother as well. Something that she probably grew up knowing.
If I had ever met my father before his death, I would’ve done what Amber did.
Be prepared for Memyself to be morally superior to you.
I’m not morally superior to anyone. The one time I met my own abuser with violence I broke his arm with a lead pipe. I was aiming for the head, but the weight through me off. It was my older brother, and he was on alot of drugs back then and they made him violent. Now he’s long recovered and we’re very close. If I had gone through with the action I had attempted, that I had wanted…
My arguments are shaped by personal experience. Some of which were very horrible, yet educational. They are not advanced simply out of a desire to achieve some pointless moral high ground anonymously on a website.
Your experience does not equate to data. I think your problem here is that you actually have no idea how rare snd lucky your personal situation is, compared to that of most others.
I never claimed my experiences allowed for perfect insight, just that I feel violence was unwarranted here, in this specific instance as is implied.
I’m also not sure what counts as “lucky” with my personal experiences. Didn’t seem very lucky.
Lucky as a relative term. Which is not to demean your experiences, of course. Simply saying that on a scale ranging from “healthy relationship” to “beaten to an unrecognizable pulp,” you’re farther away from the latter than many others. As an objective term, lucky definitely wouldn’t be used.
I didn’t clarify it, but my striking back at my abuser was after over three years of severe physical beatings. Even though I was two years younger than my brother, I understood what the drugs he was on had done to him, combined with our shared experiences as siblings growing up that had not been particularly good. I also knew that if I struck back at him, I would hurt him. so I restrained myself. for three years. Until one day, I couldn’t. At that moment (after being knocked across a room), I decided to kill him. I took the pipe he was hitting me with and swung it at his head as he charged me. I failed to hit his head because of the unexpected weight (it was solid). I hit his elbow instead, breaking his arm.
Violence against an abuser might be a wonderful cathartic fantasy. But for me at least, the reality was brutally horrible. I do not think it is a reaction to be cheered – not when the person being verbally abused can simply walk away. Though as someone else pointed out, living out a cathartic victory through harmless entertainment is a powerful and possibly necessary outlet.
If the end result was attempted manslaughter, restraining yourself does not seem to have been a very good solution.
I didn’t restrain myself, and the outcome was negative. That was the point.
“I restrained myself. for three years”
This is what you want Amber to do.
“Until one day, I couldn’t. At that moment […], I decided to kill him.”
And this is how it worked out for you. Fighting back before it comes to that seems like the superior option.
No, what I wanted Amber to do was leave and cut this person from her life. I didn’t have that option as clearly as Amber did. I was a minor living in the same home as my older brother. I had no easy way to separate myself from my abuser. Amber’s scenario is not comparable in the way that you are suggesting. She has not seen this man for three years and can assume control of the situation and not see him again, if she so chooses.
After breaking my brother’s arm, I was forced from my home anyway. I should have left before that happened. I didn’t, and allowed myself to stay in a scenario where both abuse and my reaction was inevitable. That said, my path was unclear. Amber’s path was a door likely less than ten feet away.
You seem to be implying that fighting back against your abuser with violence is unjustified unless they had just as much provocation as you did before you fought back against your abuser. That strikes me as rather…arrogant.
I’m not sure where you got that idea. I thought it was rather clear that I believed my reaction was negative. Intentionally trying to kill someone who is hurting you is a poor response, and had I succeeded, would have caused more emotional damage to myself in the long run than the abuse did.
How about defending yourself BEFORE it gets to the point where you snap and try to kill them?
Punching her abuser is far from the worst possible response, and in my opinion is one of the more constructive responses. (Sometimes there are no good responses.)
It’s non-lethal, leaves a lasting impression, and gives a clear message that you aren’t going to let yourself be abused anymore.
Just saying “she could have walked away” is both arrogant and unrealistic. Just like all those teachers who blame the victim of bullying because they “could have just walked away”. It’s a bullshit answer that doesn’t do anything to resolve the problem.
How about removing the person in question from the equation before such a thing happens? Amber hasn’t spoken to this man in three years. Good chance she won’t see him again for years. Better yet, she can get a restraining order and he can go to jail next time he tries something like this.
This isn’t the playground. These aren’t children. they are not living in a scenario where they are going to be with each other every day. Calling my argument that Amber is best served by walking away unrealistic by comparing it to a scenario that is in no way representative of what is actually happening within the comic is truly unrealistic.
Despite what you see in comics, a hard punch can be very physically damaging and can be lethal – particularly if the one struck falls to the ground.
A restraining order doesn’t mean he will stay away, though. It just means that he can be arrested if he doesn’t and if she calls the cops. Maybe she used to have a restraining order, but he stayed away after it expired, so she didn’t renew it. Or maybe the court wouldn’t let her renew it for some reason. Maybe she couldn’t even get a restraining order in the first place. Maybe she was afraid that getting a restraining order would just make him mad and he would hurt her worse if she had one. I don’t know why Amber didn’t have a restraining order (or why she didn’t invoke it if she did have one), and neither do you. So why are you blaming her for not having one?
In fact, why are you blaming Amber for anything related to her dad at all? The only thing she is directly responsible for at this point is punching him. We can talk hypotheticals all day about how this could have been avoided, but in the end they’re all pointless. The ones that blame Amber doubly so.
Where exactly did I blame Amber for not having a restraining order? Where did I blame her for anything relating to her father? the only thing I blamed her for (and I wouldn’t use the word “blame” I’d say poor judgement) was punching him, a point you agree with.
Nothing in your response makes any sense.
What, he’s never going to leave?
A physically abusive person is in your room threatening you with violence, demeaning you and your mother. He is not leaving *your* room. He, in fact, declares it *his* by right. And, also, declares that you are *owned* by him.
Do you wait for him to leave. hours later, thus proving him right, or do you take some sort of action? Not necessarily violence, but *something* to get him out immediately? And note: In Indiana, pretty sure nothing he’s done [Except what he’s implied, of course] is actually illegal. Cops may not work.
I’m not sure where he physically threatened her. Could you clarify?
As far as him believing he’s proven he’s “right”? That will be some comfort when he dies alone with his daughter having disowned him.
“How? You don’t have the strength. You don’t have the fucking gall. You’re too much like your simpering mother. Touch her once and she quits.”
That sounds like a threat of physical violence to me.
If that constitutes a physical threat, doesn’t the statement Amber made (“I’ll make you leave”) come first?
No, because he could be made to leave the room by security. He was the first to actually mention the use of hands “touch her”
It’s her room. She told him to leave. He refused. She could call the IUPD to remove him–her right, their job, within the law. Instead Amber punched him before trying to call the PD. The majority of readers seem to find that cathartic–VERY. Some are concerned about what happens to Amber next (I think that Willis’ choice is more relevant than Hoosier law …). Some have reacted against Amber’s resort to violence, in several flavors. A few havee reacted against even questioning Amber’s resort to violence. I wish she had tried to use the PD to assert her Self as a first option, with her fist in ready reserve. I wonder, did she snap because Blaine was SO good at pushing her buttons — or what? I wonder what the emotional consequences will be for her–resorting to violence is sometimes necessary, sometimes the best available option, but rarely cost free, at least in real life. BUT this comic isn’t real life and its genealogy lies in the world of superheroes–heck Blaine just got clocked by Amazigirl in mufti (right? Amber really is Amazigirl, isn’t she? I mean I’m not sure, really, but I think so…)
Given their positions, I’m not sure she could walk away. I mean, I think Blaine was between Amber and the door. So even if Amber kept a calm head and didn’t mind the possibility of Blaine emotionally abusing her on and off for the rest of her life, I don’t think she could have made it out. Especially since Blaine seems like the kind of guy who would grab her arm, push her back in, and yell in her face to pay attention to him when he’s speaking.
Yeah, looking at it you could be right. If he physically prevented her from leaving (or the implication was strong that he would), then violence becomes a more reasoned response.
His face is inches from hers and he’s yelling at her about how there’s nothing she can do to make him leave. I think the implication’s pretty damn strong.
I spent waaay more effort than I ever would have expected to expend on cartoon forensics. Based on how the characters move over the strips since Blaine showed up, I’m pretty sure he is indeed between her and the door.
I want cartoon forensics to be a real thing so much.
Doesn’t matter. Indiana’s got “stand your ground” laws in effect. Which simply means that you don’t have to try to escape first before you use self-defense. “Castle doctrine” would also apply in this case, since she’s the resident of the room, but Indiana’s a step above that.
Why should she walk away? It’s HER room, and HE refused to leave, threatening her and physically intimidating her. She used her only means of defense.
I think someone already figured out that he was between her and the door at this point, in which case, no, she really couldn’t.
If you scroll just a little bit up, you will see that the point you are referring to was in this thread.
That said, it’s extrapolation. There is no indication that I saw that Amber tried to leave and was stopped or otherwise restrained.
What are you, the frackin’ cartoon police? It’s FICTION. Of course people aren’t going to make the perfect choices. Otherwise there’s no drama.
Yes. it’s fiction. And it’s compelling fiction with compelling characters in compelling situations. That provokes speculation and discussion on what is or what could be. Are you the forum police? I don’t think you are.
You’re right. It IS drama. And dramatic stories spawn discussion and controversial reactions. Would you prefer to shut that down?
Well, yes. People are imperfect. Fleshling and transformer alike. Fictional people do not have to be roll models for us. Authors and comic creators do not often write people who always make the best choices.
And, of course, sometimes good people disagree on what the best choices are.
One thing you have failed to see is that Amber’s reaction is, for many people, cathartic. She has done what other’s wish they could do. I feel that you should let them have that. This is for them.
Another thing you fail to see is that for others, they have done this and felt it was the right choice. You do not know their circumstances, so I suggest you do not judge. Or say things that make people infer that you are judging.
This does not solve Amber’s problems. Of corse, nothing she could have done at this time would. Part of that is that she is in the middle of a storyline in a daily comic strip. Another part is that her problems are simply not the kind that get solved in a few panels. But you know that. Or, at least you should.
Lastly, I ask that you not suggest that her problems are easily solvable. They are not. You are, of course, free to do as you wish. These are just suggestions.
Megatron, I agree with all you say. And I get the catharsis though PERSONALLY I’d have preferred that Amber try to call Campus PD first and see Blaine dragged out by them ranting and raving or have him melt down completely and get arrested. IF Blaine tried to stop her calling, THEN PUNCH HIS HEAD OFF. But that’s me (for several reasons). And I know that wouldn’t have solved things and Blaine might well have come back if she’d called the law… But I’m not sure I get Willis’ reaction to Memyself EVEN THOUGH I had passed my own limit in reading the arc as it was going up till today. TRYING to get it, I can think this arc could have been harder to draw than to read even though Willis knew how it would AND that Willis feels the trauma it caused lots of his readers. (I’m not trying to analyze DW, I’m just trying to imagine his PoV, because I don’t get why MMS torqued him SO.)
Hitting a weaker person who’s done nothing to deserve it and hitting an abusive, unapologetic, threatening asshole who refuses to comply with reasonable demands is NOT the same thing. It is absolutely not the same thing, and the two situations are not equivalent at all. It is NOT. The same. Thing.
Don’t over think it. The central theme of this series is how young people resort to sub-optimal solutions. See also: Amazigirl and the sign vandals.
ONE PUNCH! ONE PUNCH!
THIS IS THE BEST COMIC IN THE WORLD
If this were Shortpacked this strip would have created so many lesbians.
As if it’s any less potent here.
But nobody has declaired themselves freshly created lesbians. That’s the point, it’s just not the same XD
But the only women in hear are the Dinas and we all know they reproduce asexually. And Faz is already a lesbian.
FINISH HIM! * cues up Mortal Kombat Theme on YouTube
ROUND ONE. FI-HOLY SHIT!! UH… AMBER WINS. FLAWLESS VICTORY
Knowing what a creep he is, though… will he use this to get her kicked out of school? Press legal charges?
Depends on whether he’s the type to admit to getting his ass handed to him by his daughter.
She’s got witnesses though. They can testify in her favor.
witnesses to what, bro? He was being a jerk and talking shit – still illegal to hit/assault a person just for talking……………
I’d happily perjure myslf in this kind of situation.
Actually he was threatening to hurt her while bringing up himself abusing her mother. I think any jury would side with amber in this case
I dunno about US law, but that’d be self defence here. Not that the Prosecution Service would ever pursue it, unless he drops dead.
He was in her room (state property, which she holds a legal lease to occupy) without her permission and refused to leave. That’s trespassing, for one.
Also, he made implied threats of violence against her person.
And she has witnesses.
Hell fraking yeah!
Foe’s Blaine used Taunt.
Amber Failed for the taunt.
Amber used Dynamic Punch.
It’s Super Effective!
Foe is about to send out Faz
Will you switch DOAs?
It’s a two on two battle!
DINA used SCARY FACE!!!
But it has no effect on enemy FAZ…
I’m holding b and down and praying that Blaine faints.
Faz uses Charm
Charm had no effect on Dina
Dina Flinched and couldn’t move.
Read “faints” as “farts” and giggled for five minutes.
I am twelve.
And now we cut to Dorothy, the least drama-filled family at the moment.
At least until they find out that she actually willingly went to church… 😉
Which wouldn’t bug them. They raised her to choose, not to believe what they believe.
Joke… as evidenced by the wink…
And then the next strip was Amber stomping on her father’s testicles.
As a Dumbing of Age-only reader, it’s really odd to see all these reactions. Without all the build up from what I’m guessing is the previous comic, this just seems odd.
Blaine is a vile scumbag. If you STILL didn’t hate him after his basically stating that he physically abused Amber’s mom in today’s strip, I don’t know what’s wrong with you.
What’s worse is if you wonder if he meant just physical abuse, or if he also meant sexual abuse.
Is it bad that I’m hoping he only meant physical abuse?
he said “Touch her once and she quits” in reference to her mother………………….I dunno about you – but I know I’d be knocking any motherfucker out who ever said that about my mom – dad or not. Charges be damned………….
Dont have to read the other strips to understand wanting to protect yr mom from an animal. =)
In Shortpacked, Blaine O’Malley was every bit the asshole and more (and a downright criminal). In fact, he even savagely beat that Amber once, and then in another instance tried to kidnap her (Ethan stopped him, with the help of the police). She was very timid in those days, though, and he died before she ever got a chance to stand up to him herself.
As a result, it’s very cathartic for those of us who’ve followed the Walkyverse to know that there’s a world were Amber can – and does – stand up to him.
Yeah, and it only took me about half an hour to condense it down (it was almost several paragraphs long). Meanwhile, I’m now caught up in a Shortpacked! archive binge when I really should be getting to bed.
Do it again!
DO IT AGAIN!
After jumping away from Joyce’s story, I was really worried Willis was going to leave us hanging on this one too.
Thank you for being kind to us, Willis.
CATHARTIC AS FUCK!!!
Amber, kick him in the jaw while he’s down! If you break it, he can’t start talking again!
In summary: ears ringing, jaw fractured, three ribs cracked, four broken, diaphragm hemorrhaging. Physical recovery: six weeks. Full psychological recovery: six months.
Capacity to spit at back of head: neutralized.
Quick get the car, I’ll get the quicklime!
Pressed the Facebook like button because I was speechless with awesomeness.
I am sad. Violence is never the solution.
(I’m sad because I can’t buy the original art for this one. The violence here still isn’t the solution, but it is both bad-ass and intensely satisfying.)
(Also : there is some excellent composition in these frames.)
If violence isn’t the solution, you aren’t using enough of it.
Violence is the last resort of the incompetent… Because only the incompetent wait that long to use force, and by then, it is usually too late to use anything.
Yes. Yes, sometimes, it really is.
No, some people really do deserve a beatdown.
And I say that as someone who -doesn’t- think violence solves anything.
Your moral perfection is noted and duly ignored.
GLORIOUS, GLORIOUS SCHADENFREUDE!
What does that word mean? I keep seeing it everywhere.
In the simplest explanation: happiness due to the misfortune of others.
It’s a psychological condition where one finds a sense of pleasure out of someone’s misfortune or pain. It’s usually a bad thing. In this case, it’s a sign that you’re a good person.
I think it’s when you hold a parasol for a psychiatrist, though I’m not sure what relevence it has here…
“Happiness derived from the misfortune of others”. It’s a German word that’s gotten absorbed into English over the last decade or two (because English tends to do that) to describe any moment when you’re feeling really -glad- to see someone else get hurt.
Actually, let’s have “Avenue Q” explain the concept…. in song!
Oh thank you thank you for saying that if not I was going to.
Being a word of German origin, I find you can use it to sing along to Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy.” Schadenfreude, schadenfreude, rump bump bah da, bah da da…
Pleasurable pain I believe, its German.
Of course its German.
Ode to Sadness-Joy?
Well that was cathartic.
Take note, Blaine, she stops being “property” once she hits 18, and she can punch you out all she fucking wants.
Since it’s been mentioned a couple times, while I’m no lawyer, I’m pretty sure that (especially if he has a history of abuse) the moment he refused to leave and got right up in her personal space in a physically intimidating manner, Amber was legally in the clear to defend herself.
Amber has good punching form.
You go girl!
Shin Shoryuken Super Art Finish?
I suppose it would be more appropriate to go with Street Fighter. We don’t want to kill him……Yet.
Finally! Can we get some drawings from multiple angles, or maybe even an animated GIF? Just something to celebrate.
… To this page and found it phenomenal
“Deck the dick!”
The only thing that could make this more satisfying is if Blaine ends up knocked out and collapses on Faz.
She should finish it off with a knee to the groin.
At the risk of being highly cliche and a little racist, I’m hoping Dina and her parents are secretly black belts in some obscure martial art and are just being polite and unassuming.
That was inexcusable. What she just did was rude and immature. Children just do not have the proper respect for their elders anymore!
I get where you’re coming from, but she didn’t punch him for no reason. I agree that it was immature, but I also think that given her violence issues already, he kinda had it coming.
Pretty sure Thor is joking, especially with that last sentence there.
And while your avatar is perfect in general, it is especially appropriate for this comment!
Pretty sure Thor was being sarcastic there…
Amber no. I mean, I’m glad you stood up for yourself, but you just committed a crime. A crime that I bet your dad has committed before. But if he wanted to press charges against you he could. Now I’m not saying your feelings aren’t justified…I’ve been in your shoes, I’ve felt your rage. Violence is not the answer! I’m very interested to see where this goes.
She was in her place of residence and she was threatened by someone whom I believe she has a restraining order against in front of 4 witnesses. Her legal standing is pretty secure, especially since the campus police have yet to get around to catching that masked vigilante (which I’m sure is a higher priority).
Besides which, Indiana is a “stand your ground” state. He’d just threatened her. It was reasonable for her to use force in protecting herself and others.
…Is anyone else a bit weirded out by the fact that the people most troubled by Amber’s reaction all have the same Joyce avatar?
It bothers me some too, mainly because of the alt-text. This is the most satisfying thing you’ve drawn in fifteen years, Mr. Willis? That hurts. I’m trying to express this properly, and failing. I get the catharsis and how satisfying it is to have. I understand how not clobbering someone who’s spent a lifetime trying to break you can define you.
(I get the last all too well. I don’t see how else I can make myself clear without admitting that.)
It’s valid. I’m not going to pretend it’s not. I just… is that as good as it can get? This isn’t a complaint about the strip or the author. On the contrary, Mr. Willis, thank you. It helps. (It also hurts.) I just wish it didn’t have to be as satisfying as it is.
None of this is simple but/and you have expressed yourself very well–and I wish you well.
I only hope Amber doesn’t break her hand, and I do really hope Blaine breaks his jaw…
I’m not so sure about this comic… After so many years of reading his stuff, I trust Willis to handle about any storyline, but this strip has me somewhere between “the ending to ‘Empire Strikes Back’ that the emperor wanted” and any of several cheesy “there’s a rage deep inside you bubbling just under the surface” characters.
Maybe that’s just me?
I absolutely disagree. This isn’t about Amber getting angry and punching some guy in the face. This is about an abusive father getting what’s fucking coming to him from the one and only woman who can and deserves to kick his ass.
I think it’s about both. You can’t separate the two. Yes, this is about Amber’s dad getting what’s coming to him, but he will probably be gone for a long time after this particular story ends, and Amber will still be with us, dealing with the results of this confrontation. This is an important moment in Amber’s character development, and while I’m sure Willis’s writing will vindicate it later on, right now before I know what it’s going to lead to, it makes me uneasy for her and her character development.
I commend Willis for tackling such a hard-to-navigate issue.
Hmm, I think I get what you’re saying. You’re concerned that she may have anger management issues when she’s Amazi-Girl? Should she cross that line when she’s in vigilante mode, then I would be very concerned.
Here and now though? I’m still smiling at that last panel.
Psst, the scene where Emperor Palpatine wants Luke to lash out in rage and anger is at the end of Return of the Jedi, not Empire.
You’re right, Return of the Jedi… it’s been a long week, forgive me.
Though to be fair, the Emperor couldn’t have been too pleased with how ESB ended either; Vader failed to actually capture the boy, and all they ended up with was a severed hand an an old lightsaber.
Still, they sent the rebels fleeing for their lives.
Hey, in the EU the Emperor kept that hand as a trophy and made an evil/insane clone from it, whom he gave the lightsaber to. Weren’t all bad. Well, for the Emperor.
*nerd mode on*
Actually, Palpatine only kept the trophies. It was actually the insane clone Cbaoth that had the clone Luuke made when Luke escaped his influence.
I bet this justice for Amber never being able to confront her father in the ‘Shortpacked’ universe.
Oh my freaking YES.
no matter what anyone else says, I would have done the same thing.
Wish he’d stayed alive long enough in the other comic to see this happen in THAT unverse.
An epic punch to the face and Mike is nowhere to be seen.
We all know we wanted to see this YEARS ago. I’m glad Amber got a second chance…sorta.
Man, I do not care that they ‘didn’t understand’, the amount of times a ‘polite’ parent has fucked up MY life by letting my abusive parent show up unannounced after they KNEW the situation or had someone inform them of the situation because they either thought I was ‘exaggerating’ or insisted on being ‘polite’ because they didn’t get it has left me with more than one fucked up event. I’m Asian, I live in an Asian country, and I cannot stand that kind of thing.
I don’t care if Dina didn’t understand, I don’t care if her parents insisted on being hospitable, if I was Amber in this situation I would be incredibly pissed off. I hope there is some kind of ramification for Dina or her parents here. It’s not a matter of ‘getting away’ with it, because in my country in particular people just do not get it until it’s too late.
It’s not Dina who let him in, it was her parents, and what are the chances that she managed to get out “HER DAD’S ABUSIVE AND A DICK AND SHOULDN’T BE ALLOWED IN.” before they just opened the door?
Chances are his first words to them at the door were, “I’m Amber’s father.” and for most people that’s enough.
“Apologies, my parents were insistent on being hospitable” -http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/04-just-hangin-out-with-my-family/paid-2/
“My warning was not sufficient”
A ‘Don’t let him in’ and ‘her father is abusive’ literally takes two seconds to say. Dina AND her parents at her fault here, mostly her parents. I understand Dina has some ‘social quirks’, but in a real life situation, this kind of misunderstanding isn’t funny, it’s terrible. The fact that she did not say ‘your father’s here’ is not hillarious ‘oh dina your social awkardness lol’, it’s that she literally could have prevented Amber from being placed in a situation where she had to be abused by her abuser, physical or mental.
Not that I’m accusing Willis of writing this particular misunderstanding as funny, but it literally takes two seconds to tell someone not to do something. And while I am aware Dina’s ‘social awkwardness’ may be a result of a kind of mental illness, she needs to understand at some point that there are ramifications for that sort of thing, ESPECIALLY in this sort of situation.
This kind of ‘hospitality’ is EVERYWHERE in my country, and as a result, beating your child or being abusive is so commonplace that no one cares. Schools in my country still cane students for ‘irresponsible’ behavior.
Is it possible Dina wasn’t aware of Amber’s dad being an abusive prick, and just didn’t want to let him in without Amber around? I know if I was at university and wasn’t in my dorm at the time, I wouldn’t want my roommate just letting my parents in unannounced without me there. That’d just be weird coming home to that.
…Is no one actually reading the comics? Seriously? Really? I know we all love Dina, for sure, but why are you defending someone’s actions where, regardless, they are in the wrong?
“Dina I TOLD YOU ABOUT MY FATHER, why did you let him in here?”
Dina’s a great character, who does not know how to interact with people. We all know this. And that’s fine. But she has to learn that her lack of knowledge, or, dare I say it, ignorance on being able to understand certain things, has placed in Amber in a situation where she has to deal with her abuser. That, I am sorry to say, is wrong. It is so damn wrong. And I hope that there are ramifications for her, because if I was Amber, I would be furious.
I would NOT want to come back to where I sleep, a place where I am supposed to feel secure, to find the person who had beat myself or my mother there waiting to abuse me. Especially when Dina had the opportunity to warn Amber, PROPERLY, instead of just saying ‘your family is inside.
Being socially awkward does not give make it forgivable for placing ANYONE in that situation, and I hope Dina has to deal with some kind of consequence because of it in terms of waking up on how her ‘awkwardness’ put someone in a potentially dangerous (but definitely abusive) situation.
When you open up to someone about your abuse, that is a form of trust. A very very intimate form of trust. Dina’s inability to warn Amber or tell her parents about her father is a breach of that trust.
Words don’t have much meaning in those situations, but I want to tell you that I understand exactly what you described in your comments. Most people who didn’t go through that situation will be bound by their mental reflexes to find excuses, especially when it comes to a liked character (or similarly, a liked person or themselves in real life).
Haha my bad, forgot about that part.
I doubt yelling at Dina or her parents would help anything. What sort of consequence do you want her to go through? Being shunned by her roommate? Told to fuck off? Kicked in the gut? People make mistakes. Obviously this is a big one, but still a mistake, not a calculated action meant to harm anyone.
Dina’s mother mentions not understanding–perhaps Dina *did* tell them and they didn’t get what she meant. We don’t know and until they get a chance to explain themselves, perhaps blowing up isn’t the best course of action.
I’m not saying she should yell or do anything, I’m saying I hope within the story, this, at the very least, causes Dina to wake up a little bit and realize that her not understanding parts of social interaction can lead to people getting hurt. Because if I was in Amber’s shoes, as I have been in the past, I would be furious.
I don’t know why you think ‘consequence’ means something hyperbolic or over the top. But what happened to Amber is a breach of trust,
In addition, I am sharing my own experiences when it comes to abuse, and the consequence for the person who breached my trust was not talking to them for a very long time. Even though this situation is not exactly or precisely the same, I was confronted by my abuser in a place where I felt safe and secure, which shattered a lot of the security I had built up around myself in my own home.
This was not a ‘mistake’, as ‘my warning was not adequate’ when you could just say ‘your father is here’ is incredibly misleading. And in a real world situation, someone letting your abuser into your own home is incredibly hard to forgive.
I don’t want anything to happen to Dina apart from her waking up and making more of an effort in being able to communicate with people better. Because it led to this (terrible) situation, something that neither Amber nor anyone who has suffered abuse should have to go through.
Fair enough. Well said, though I’d still like to hear Dina’s side.
(Various doom regarding Dina (specifically the insufficient warning–though Amber could also have taken a second to put two and two together rather than ignore what she was told) and her parents; still, in the first panel of this strip, there is sweet realisation and acknowledgement (by Dina’s mother) of the seriousness of what was done, which is intensely gratifying compared to if no recognition or regret had been shown.)
I wouldn’t be surprised if these details were intentional hooks for Dina character growth 100 strips down the line. Nothing in this particular scene actually requires Dina or Dina’s family’s presence. Fallout from this is unlikely to involve Ethan heavily, I think. It may involve Danny as a make it or break it moment when she explains herself upon unmasking to him.
So I think Dina’s inclusion here is prep work for turning her character into something more than an adorable punchline. Willis has a pretty long history of doing that.
I think if you read http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/04-just-hangin-out-with-my-family/paid-2/ again, you will see that Dina DID try to stop him, but it was her parents that insisted on him coming in. So while partly her fault, I don’t think you can pin 100% blame by a long shot on Dina. It’s obvious she did at least try.
I think at some point Amber should stop calling him “dad”.
Oh, hello, biological male direct ancestor!
Rex, just take it to the next logical step. Hello, Dick.
Fuckface is already taken.
I like “Oh, it’s you”
Just hangin’ out with my family.
So yeah, evil bastard.
Hope Blaine enjoys his stay in the Smackdown Hotel and it doesn’t matter if you think I’m a troglodyte for saying that. Sometimes bullies deserve a punch in the face, we can’t all be Gandhi.
An die freude.
“It is better to be violent, if violence is in one’s nature, than to put on the cloak of pacifism to cover one’s impotence.” –Gandhi
In this particular case, I think he’d agree that this a not-inappropriate response.
I think we’d even get a “fuck yeah! Right in the faaaaaaaace!” from Gandhi for this strip!
and just like that, amber is my favorite character ever, in history. Now please for the love of god HIT FAZ NEXT!
Holy punches batman!
One punch! One punch!
Yeah, that oughtta do it.
To quote the Cell Block Tango: “He had it coming.”
If you’d have been there
If you’d have seen it
I bet ya you would have the done the same!
Oh my god that was soo hot it made me lesbian. Twice. And I’m a straight dude.
Can you do that? Become a lesbian twice?
I became a lesbian twice with your mom?
I rejoice… unless there are consequences for her. I really hope she doesn’t get expelled, arrested, sued, or anything else, because that would just be 🙁
People aren’t prosecuted for stuff like this more often than not. I had a friend who went to the cops after being kicked in the stomach repeatedly, by a meth head, when she was pregnant and nothing happened. I just really think fights and assaults happen without consequence more often than not.
Plus he was threatening her, and there are four other people in the room.
I think she’s safe.
And the dorm’s RA is Ruth. If anyone would be sympathetic to face-punching an abusive father. . .
This….this is the single most gratifying thing I’ve ever seen. Willis, you’re a damn genius
Sometimes, a punch is a good thing. PRAISE THE WILLIS!
(I’d buy a t-shirt with the fifth panel any day of the week)
That is all.
I feel a strong need to declare that I am morally superior to Blain. Which is silly, because I am morally superior to all fleshlings.
99% of humanity is morally superior to Blain.
It monstrously saddens and embarasses me that 1% of humanity is *not* morally superior to Blaine.
Like you mentioning how Ruth is meaner in the DoA universe and a good reason why Billy didn’t reciprocate her kiss, this version of Amber is stronger than her SP! counterpart. And after seeing that display of catharsis, I am very glad for it.
I thought it was lightning! But it was blue coat hangers.
No, Amber! Violence is not the answer!
(Violence is the question. “Yes!” is the answer.)
All joking about not knowing who Amazi-Girl is aside, I’m starting to think Amber’s motivation for becoming a crimefighter was inspired by her father, and watching how physically powerless her mother was against him. It seems like all her training has, intentionally or not, been leading up to this moment. It’s immensely satisfying because it avoids the dead parents superhero trope while also providing wish fulfillment for people who have suffered physical abuse at the hands of a parent, or witnessed spousal abuse. It’s what I wish I could do to my mom’s second husband, who committed both.
we need a street fighter scene next strip XD
I scared my cats yelling “YES!”
POW! RIGHT IN THE KISSER!
POW! RIGHT IN THE KISSER!
POW! RIGHT IN THE KISSER!
POW! RIGHT IN THE KISSER!
POW! RIGHT IN THE KISSER!
Bang! Zoom! – Straight to the third moon of Omicron Persei 8!
That punch looked hard enough to shatter Praxis, the moon of the Klingon homeworld Q’onos or however it’s transliterated.
I’m more partial to SHORYUKEN!
but that’s just me.
omg omg omg wow that is so amazing and so satisfying. I hope the inevitable fallout is not too-too awful!!
WHERE YOU *AT*
now then… back to your mother, and her nickels.
I NEED ANIMATED GIF GOODNESS OF THIS !!! Last two panels face o doom to fist of fury!
brb, retreating into a world where this will have absolutely no negative consequences for Amber or anyone close to her ever.
Pow! Yes! Best strip ever! I don’t know what consequences that bunch is bringing to Amber but totally worth it!
Oh Cheese, YES! Words fail to describe the sense of visceral satisfaction!
Oh man Willis. Thanks! Merry early christmas!
Joe’s dad touched Amber’s mom once. Now they’re boning.
And thats STILL a healthier relationship then the one she had with Blaine
Greatest thing ever or GREATEST THING EVER?
Can we get this on video? Or animated? Something I can replay over and over and over again?
I second and third and forth this.
God, I feel like I need a cigarette after this strip.
That is some Pure Freaking Rage™ Amber opened up in that fourth panel! Not that I can blame her, though. Her father is Satan, I’m pretty sure of that.
No Satan is actully a really nice guy when you meet him
At the very least, he gets you into all the cool parties.
He’d never hang out with an asshole like Blaine.
At least not one as overt as Blaine, anyhow.
WHAT’CHU GONNA DO WHEN AMBERMANIA RUNS WILD, BROTHEEERRR!?
Blaine: You hit me! In front of witnesses!
Dina: No she didn’t.
Dina’s folks: Yes, we saw nothing.
Faz: I saw, but you are not emasculated in my eyes, parental figure.
*Now not not, dammit.
No, no – “not” is funnier.
Faz uses Reassurance.
It’s not very effective!
Eh, good luck getting chages pressed on that one. “So what was he doing that led up to the assault? He was gloating about how he BEAT MY MOTHER.”
This pleases me. I must now see the expression on Blaine’s FAAAAAACEEEEE!
What face? Oh, you mean the one over here in the corner?
Now, Blaine explodes into a heap of Canadian coins and Amber levels up.
Yes please make it so!
I have read Shortpacked for years and DOA since it started. I have never commented on a strip before now.
Loved it sir. Well done.
She must have learnt that kind of punch from Amazi-Girl somehow. I didn’t even know she knew Sal…
Only made better by that fact that the page was showing the Amazi-Girl header when I got here.
Aw man I ‘m late!
Anyway…… *takes abdeep breath*
Don’t fuck with the Amber!
Even after several years now, I still deal with the emotional and psychological fallout from just how much my own dad emotionally misused and tried to manipulate me, and just how much he threw away and mistreated his relationship with my mother (his ex-wife now, thank GOD), myself and my siblings for his own selfish desires.
Seeing Amber deck her own abusive father like that, especially after he insulted her AND HER MOTHER like that, is very cathartic for me. Thank you Willis for doing this.
Indeed! I was happy when my parents divorced!
I really disapprove of all of this gratification of violence in the comments. It doesn’t solve anything. I’ve been in Amber’s shoes, and I’ve done the exact same thing. And I truly regret it. It was the only time I’ve ever hit another person. Nothing changed. I’m not judging Amber, of course – it takes a lot to restrain yourself in the heat of the moment when an extremely abusive parent has been making you miserable your entire life and pushes you over the edge. It doesn’t make you a bad person. But what I did, and what Amber did… it’s not the right thing to do, at all. It shouldn’t be celebrated and revered, the way it is in these comments. Hitting another person, even if they’re a person who loves to make other people miserable… there’s nothing good about it. You’re just creating even more misery, more negative feelings, more pain. It doesn’t help anything.
And yeah, it’s “just” a comic, but it’s a comic about real life situations that strongly remind people of their own lives, and much of the discussion around it is about the real life situations as much as it is the specific situation depicted in the comic.
Just my two cents. I really liked the comic itself. Willis does a great job of making his comic come to life, of making something that people can relate to.
I will be HUGELY interested to see how Willis portrays Amber’s reaction–if she experiences the pure satisfaction of violence or experiences any ambivalence or regret, even regret that violence seemed the only way.
It brings to mind a time when she smacked Mike, in another universe, across the face. She was really upset by going over the edge, afraid she’d become like her violent dad.
–by which I mean to say, I’m really curious, too, to see how Amber is feeling once the adrenaline wears off in *this* universe. There are a lot of possibilities, and she’d be justified to feel any way at all.
Huh. Behind Amber, the background shades of red have transitioned from darker (when she was focused on memory) to lighter (when she punched the asshole). The POW! itself is white with a pink outline. She’s being brought out of the past and into the present?
Some part of me wants to hope that her father is intentionally provoking her just to elicit the reaction (which is still stupid but potentially well intended), but the father of Faz is probably simply that much of a butt monkey.
yeah son, you just got knocked the fuck up!
This shit was long over deu for her.
I kinda wish that one day, some how every version of amber can see this.
So *this* is what satisfaction feels like…
BOOM! That’s all I have to say for this.
Amber used Sky Uppercut! It’s super-effective!
“Touch her once and she quits.”
Willis, stop adding layers of backstory and character depth with only a single sentence! You’re going to make the rest of the authors feel bad about themselves! 😛
I saw something like this coming, but I didn’t see this.
Well played Willis. Well played.
Man, Willis, are you setting us up for Amber getting into B-I-G trouble?
Assault with witnesses, in the dorms, at a big university.
Mostly sympathetic witnesses who also witnessed him threatening her. Faz is probably on his dad’s side, but he seems also the kind who would respond to a question of ‘did he threaten her’ with ‘yeah, but only because the bongo wouldn’t listen’.
Y’know…I wonder if this arc is the end for Amazi-girl. Getting to actually beat the crap out of her dad might mean she doesn’t need to sublimate the issues any more.
It’s also an opportunity for Danny to man-up and support her.
(Must. Keep. Straight. Face)
…or maybe it’s an oppurtunity for Amber to fight her own battles and not rely on someone for physical support?
When it comes to the later, I will be very surprised if Danny isn’t sympathetic and caring and listening when she needs it. I don’t get where people constructed this fairy tale that Danny is the worst person ever. He’s oblivious, and sometimes self involved, but he’s trying to be a good person, and he does care about his friends.
And you know what? I’ll say it. I hope the next strip is a Danny one. I like him. He’s interesting, and has character growth to go through. I EAGERLY anticipate it.
“I don’t get where people constructed this fairy tale that Danny is the worst person ever. He’s oblivious, and sometimes self involved, but he’s trying to be a good person, and he does care about his friends.”
Thank you for summing up the reason I don’t comment on Danny strips, because holy shit, here’s this giant unwarranted dogpile. I kind of think it’s because everyone wants to slurp on Dorothy’s hog, for obvious reasons, and Danny doesn’t exactly get along with Dorothy for equally obvious reasons…but even so, it’s…what the hell, people?
Danny’s said and done some silly, oblivious things unrelated to Dorothy, but like you said, it’s not like he’s an asshole! He’s a nerd, and he can be dumb as bricks, but he’s a Good Dude at heart.
Also, uh, I’m gonna second the vote of Amber fighting her own battles in the physical sense because the idea that Danny has to punch Blaine too because he’s a man is just silly.
If he doesn’t support Amber in non-punchy ways, I’ll be disappoint, but I don’t think it’ll happen.
Danny seems to be the average guy in this comic. Therefore, we don’t find as much interest in him as we do the other characters. The only interesting thing about him, as far as I can tell (and I’ve only read DoA here, so I have no idea if he’s any more interesting in any other continuity), is that he doesn’t know that Amazi-Girl is Amber. He has the whole “oblivious” thing going for him. He’s kind of like the Lois Lane of the comics, except a bit less… hrm. I dunno, actually. He’s an average dude, and we’re less invested in him.
Maybe it’s carryover from the Walkyverse, where he was kind of an unbearable judgmental prick sometimes and ended up marrying Billie, which earned him the hatred of Ruth/Billie shippers everywhere? Except here he’s been, to my eyes, a lot more tolerable! Even in the Walkyverse he had moments where genuine heroism shone through, so like…give the Average Dude a chance before lumping him in with Howard and Faz, people. ‘s all I’m saying.
I wonder if she’s able to do this because Blaine moved away from her sooner, so his effect on her wasn’t so stifling? Maybe her dealing with Ethan’s parents helped too, getting experience with handling terrible circumstances.
I think it’s a factor- at the very least, it’s the reason why she can do it at this point in her life.
And now he’s dead
AW FUCK YEAH!!! All I could hear in that last panel was Guile’s theme.
All I could hear was “Shoryuken”!
My reaction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3ALwKeSEYs
Don’t forget the double-tap.
I really don’t think there’s anything more to be said here. And if there is, I’ve been rendered speechless from sheer joy to much to say it.
And thousands cheer.
WILLIS I LOVE YOU SO MUCH RIGHT NOW
But what did her dad mean when he said he paid for it? Is she financially indebted to Blaine? Is he going to cut her off?
Even after the divorse due to the court order I believe Amber’s dad had to help pay for her college. So yeah to some point he paid for it so he feels that he owns it. He’s a douche. Let’s just stop at that and be happy he got sucker punched. *throws confetti*
In a previous strip, he says, “I paid for it. Court order.” http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/04-just-hangin-out-with-my-family/paid-2/
It being a court order (probably as a form of child support), it’s obviously not his money anymore, but it’s just as obvious he doesn’t see it that way. If he attempts to stop paying, however, he’ll have the U.S. justice system after him.
Hmm, so will this turn into an actual fight or will Blaine back off? My money is he’ll back of as they’re both out of costume although I suppose Dina’s family isn’t exactly the most talkative witnesses…
Amber 1, Abusive A-Hole 0.
Who needs Amazi-Girl when Amber lets loose? 🙂
Fuck. I can’t even count the number of times my dad has said those exact same words to me. He still says them to me. He said them to me this week. I never even thought about how awful it must look from the outside.
I think I should start training myself to fight.
I can help with that.
What’s the first step.
Close your fist with the thumb outside, and start punching. Use your entire body, not just your arm.
I know that much, at least. Doesn’t help much when it’s five-foot-two
Go for the throat, if you can reach that. If not there’s always the low hanging fruit. It’s more a question of mindset. You don’t beat people up by having superior strength, reach or technique; you do it by hesitating less than the other guy to seriously injure him and scar him for life.
Witness Amber punching out her pappy: He’d never in a hundred years have imagined she could do that to him, so it worked.
Thought of another great example in Dolores Claiborne. When she gets enough of her husband beating her, she breaks a stone pot over his head when he has his back turned. He never raises his hand nor dick to her again for the rest of his days, because he knows to be afraid of her.
It’s like Machiavelli said, if you must harm an enemy, do it in such a way that you don’t need to worry about their retaliation. This can probably be applied in any number of untenable situations you may find yourself in.
I had my own moment of taking Machiavelli’s advice.
In eighth grade, the “cool” guys decided that the entire class was now in a purple nurple fight. These were the super elitist “I’m better than you for these umpteen bajillion reasons” types. I was the quiet dork that always shrank down from my 6’2″ frame.
One day before English started, the leader of the pack snuck up behind me and got a good grip with both hands. It hurt like nothing ever had, and I’ve taken some pretty good damage in my time.
After about a full minute, he lets go and parades back to his seat with a sickening air of self satisfaction. Too bad I had hit a breaking point.
We sat at tables with individual chairs. Those maroon plastic ones that I am sure many of you have seen. I picked mine up by the backrest, and as I called out his name, I swung the legs of the chair into his back with the full extent of my fury.
No one dared say a word, and he, nor his cronies, EVER bothered me again.
Seconded here what Jenny’s saying, as a Krav Maga instructor. Liam Neeson in Batman Begins is entirely right. The “will to act” is paramount over everything. The hardest part about self-defense training isn’t technique and learning the moves. The hardest part is flipping that switch inside your head from a non-threatening “off” to a fully kick-ass “ON, MOTHERFUCKER!”
Even at 6’4” my demeanor is more teddy bear than “ohmygodhe’sgonnamurderme!” My personality reflects that too. It took YEARS of training for me to get to a point where I would feel comfortable in going from passive “on” to aggressive “on” if anybody laid their hands on me. It really is 90% mental.
It doesn’t matter what you do–as long as you do SOMETHING you’ve got a chance. Unfortunately, most victims who have stepped into my class never considered anything like violence or self-defense until they have been victimized. I wish more people would choose to learn how and when to apply violence before as preparation rather than as thinking about it only after something has happened to them.
You know who has the LEAST amount of problems in going from “off” to “on” from what I’ve seen? Mothers. I love working with women and especially with mothers. “Mama bear” is as true a trope as I’ve ever seen. My favorite mother that I’ve partnered with was a 5-foot-nothing, weighs-100-pounds-soaking-wet Asian lady who joined the class with her 15-year-old daughter. The daughter was rather meek about everything. Mother put 100% into everything she did. I’d put my hands on her for a choke and BAM! BAM! BAM! I’d be on the ground before I knew what happened. And grateful that a cup blocked the worst of the strikes.
Remember: As long as you do SOMETHING, you’ve got a chance. A person who assaults you will think they can take you. They’re thinking you’re easy prey. PROVE THEM WRONG. They don’t want a fight–they want to exert power over you. They want to OWN you. FUCK. THEM. UP. Give it your all and that severely messes with their thinking. Groin strikes. Throat. Hit soft bits of them with hard bits of you (their stomach/your closed fist). Hit hard bits of them with soft bits of you (their skull with your palm heel).
DO NOT STOP UNTIL *YOU* FEEL THEY ARE NO LONGER A THREAT TO YOU. No teacher in the world can tell you when exactly to stop attacking, so that’s something that you have to decide on your own. You have to look deep into your heart and dedicate yourself to making sure that you only stop until you or whoever you are with feels safe.
As for the comic strip: this was excellent. I wholly agree with Amber’s actions here. Amber has witnesses. Blaine was clearly being manipulative and abusive. This is a COLLEGE campus. There’s a lot of variables here, but I think Amber will be fine. She sure as FUCK is in the right here. I understand some of the commentators’ concerns about legal retaliation from Blaine, but I sure as hell do not agree with anyone’s sentiments that Amber’s reaction was in the wrong.
I’m reminded of Terry Pratchett’s “Night Watch”, when Sam Vimes teaches his younger self to fight. The kid’s first move is to say “I don’t want to hurt you, Sarge!”, then try to hit him.
Doesn’t matter how big they are if they’ve got legs. The knees are one of the most painful places to be hurt in the whole body, and one hard kick at either of them can get your opponent down to a face-to-boot level.
*e-hugs* I know that I’m a stranger from the internet, but I want you to know that I believe in you. 🙂 Don’t give in to the shit your dad puts you through.
I’m so sorry. *hugs*
Don’t punch him until you’re prepared with a plan for afterwards.
Call the crisis line in your area. Even if it’s “only” emotional abuse and not physical. Crisis lines all have domestic specialists who can help you evaluate whether your situation is dangerous and in what way, they can walk you through getting all kinds of support. They’ll be able to discuss with you some appropriate options for your particular situation, and how to keep you safe now and, if you decide that punching is necessary, afterwards as well.
Google “crisis services” and the name of your city/town. (It’s confidential and won’t show up on your phone bill, either.)
Do this. Violence, while satisfying, will probably make things worse instead of better.
Thanks. That’s probably the most helpful advice I’ve gotten. I think the threats are more of what exhaust me than anything else.
Wooden baseball bat, with few nails driven through it?
Nothing wrong with having backup if it’s needed.
Kinda makes up for the fact Shortpacked Amber never got to do this. Awesome strip
To bad Danny’s there to see this!
Insert the word N-O-T between “Danny’s” and “there” …..thank you.
And thus, a day we have been waiting for for years finally comes to pass.
And then cut to a scene of Danny experiencing first world problems.
Thanks to Regalli posting the link I know why this scene is as epic as it is. I really need to get around to reading the other comics.
Thanks! Glad I added something here.
And I think this is only one of a handful or so of strips where it’s really all that necessary to get the full impact. You can tell already Blaine in this universe is evil, but the fact that he was a known force for years in the old one who just got off with dying makes him getting floored so much better.
BOOYA!!! YOU GO GIRL!! SHOW HIM WHO’S THE REAL BOSS!!
*Slow clap with a dropped jaw*
I hope he swallowed some teeth.
…welp, so much for him just being an asshole.
Now I feel sorry for Faz.
Even if one or two people somehow missed it, I wanted to compliment you, Willis, on how well you got across through tone, word choice, and body language Blaine’s subtle and not-so-subtle threats and sheer maliciousness, leading up to the clear message he’d been trying to get across all along, “I own you.” Things like, “Well, technically, it’s my room, isn’t it?” (if I’ve paid for it, I own it) and, “That’s a pretty nice laptop you’ve got there, kiddo,” (maybe too nice, maybe I’ll take it from you) and his opening her closet to comment upon and judge her for her things (you’re only allowed what *I* allow you to have), all of which, text and subtext included, are awful and realistic all at once. I’m glad you made the subtext text, because too often, people who’ve never been in that situation don’t realize that it’s not about the money or the items or what-have-you – it’s about the power someone is trying to exert over you. It’s about that message of, “I own you.”
All of which is to say, as unpleasant as these Blaine strips have been to read, thank you for giving me something to try to point people to when attempting to explain how malicious and truly insidious some of this behavior really is.
That’s what made this so uncomfortably real for me, I think – because Blaine, in these strips, *is* my father, aside from the fact that I know he’s never hit my mother, because she would have gone for him with a knife in his sleep. And god, I can’t count the number of times I’ve wished I could have done what Amber did, in this last panel.
Man one day I decide not to read this comic at midnight at its the best comic ever.
SWEET! And since she’s a superhero, she gets the superhero POW! effect!
And on a side note, it appears Dina’s lack of contractions is hereditary.
On another side note, I love how the number of people who picked “I voted for Dina” in the most recent poll is greater than the number of people that actually voted for Dina.
PLEASE let the next strip have Ruth ripping out Blaine’s femur!!!!!
This is such a good strip I think I need to change my pants.
I think I overdosed on catharsis
In that last panel AmaziGirl’s origin story finally came into focus for me.
Blaine: My fight moneyyyyy!
You just made such a series moment quite hilarious!
That a girl. How I wish I could have done this to my own father……on numerous occasions.
According to Cape Fear and The Simpsons if someone enters your home anything you do to them is nice and legal.
“Yeah, but it doesn’t work if you invite them…”
The way Dina’s mom says it, she could perfectly be talking about vampires. And I think that’s the way Willis intended it.
I really gotta say, I hope Blaine goes to harm Amber, and then her mom, Joe and Joe’s dad show up, and then Joe and Joe Sr manly the shit out of Blaine and throw his ass out.
Inverted Amber Smile!
Wait, who is that chick in the back?
That’s Dina’s mom.
Woah, that face…
It’s about fuckin time and since (probably) no one else said it…
Is it strange to be aroused by this?
Well this has been a long time coming hasn’t it…….
Your most popular update so far, I’d bet. Now, for her next trick, she can save Dina from Faz.
Well, that was a straightforward Q&A session. He asked, she answered.
Yo what I miss, Oh shit!…well that is some good TV rite there
*high-pitched voice* TOASTY!
I kind of feel sorry for Amber’s mom when she realizes that her romp with Joe’s dad left Amber to deal with that pig.
The only way this could possibly be better is if the following strip is something along the lines of:
Blaine: *struggles to get back on his feet* You ungrateful little bongo! I am your father and you will show me the respect I deserve!
Amber: I just did. *punches him again and knocks him the fuck out*
On behalf of every person who has ever been abused: thank you, Willis. From the bottom of my heart. *goes off to be teary*
Wow…I’m quite shocked at how many wide eyed idealists there are crying out “Violence is never the answer!” (it’s still small compared to the rest of the fandom making video game references thankfully)
Try telling that to a service member. Try telling that to someone in the process of being raped. Try telling that to someone in the process of being mugged.
Guess what people, outside of your personal world of flowers and rainbows some people have been in situations that called for violence. Some even in situations where it was life threatening. And before it even rears it’s ugly head, let me address the oh so inevitable “You should call the Police!” argument. Sure, cause response time is inevitable and THE POLICE KNOW WHAT THEY’RE DOING right?
Context matters. Amber isn’t being mugged or raped. She is not a service member in a life threatening situation. She’s in a room with several other people in a heavily populated dorm being emotionally bullied. Possibly by someone attempting to provoke an assault as a potential means of getting out of his court ordered payments.
He refused to leave when ordered to. I doubt he has any legal recourse.
I’m more worried about Amber. I doubt she likes this side of herself very much.
Hell, yeah! Amber shoulda been packing and finished Blaine for good!
Please tell me you don’t actually believe this. Punching his lights out? Sure. Hell, do it some more while we’re still in this situation. Just out and out killing him in this situation? Hell no.
Many participants in this forum assume that Amber’s punch is ‘IT’, many because they’ve sized up Blaine as violent, but a bully who’ll just fold since Amber punched him. But is that known? Is that something to count on? Could she take him if he’s on guard and comes after her? Was she defending herself rationally or revenging herself or did she snap and lash out? To be honest, I don’t know. But several participants have said Indiana is a “stand your ground” state; if so, doesn’t that mean she could finish with him and not take the risk that he’s going to get up and attack her or come back later?
I haven’t any clue about the intricacies of “stand your ground” laws. What I adhere to–and what we teach our students–is to meet force with the appropriate amount of force. Despite how gun happy the stereotypical portrayal of Texas is, we recognize that there are LEVELS of violence and immediately jumping to the most lethal is definitely not always the best way to go.
If someone punches you, you’ve every right to respond with punching them back. If you pulled out a gun and blew them away, though, that’d be too much. They pull a knife or gun on you, respond in kind. If it can threaten your life then you can respond with everything you can. I side with Amber here completely. While I or some others may have had different reactions, I in no way think Amber was wrong here. Legally, she’s got witnesses to back her up and I could definitely taking what Blaine was saying as a threat and he did refuse to leave.
But there are levels of violence. Violence isn’t inherently good. Violence isn’t inherently bad. Violence is complicated and something that must be thought about. Even if it were her legal recourse, it’d certainly blow my low opinion of Amber completely to shreds and I think she’d lose an awful lot of herself as well. This situation does not call for outright murder.
I agree with almost everything that you say, so far as it goes, and I like your philosophy of teaching, AND I’ll agree that killing Blaine GIVEN WHAT WE KNOW, is unjustified. What I wanted to get at was this: you seem to advocate RE-acting, level by level, as an attacker escalates, but isn’t that risky at best and doesn’t it yield the initiative to the attacker and sometimes put the attacker at a dangerous disadvantage? In this story we could pretty much figured that Blaine wasn’t going to kill or severely brutalize Amber, whereas I let myself think outside the Dumbyverse, which I probably shouldn’t have, but when I did, I worried about what Blaine would do when he got off the floor in a rage … or next time … or the time after that. In DoA college girls take baseball bats to rapists and punch out abusive fathers–it might be nice if it happened that way ‘out here’, but I don’t think it does very often. Women learning krav maga is good, I’m sure it helps; I’d like to study it myself but my small town had no place to learn the last time I checked. I want there to be less violence–I want it very much. And the violence isn’t what I read DoA for, I mostly read around it. But I’m not a pacifist. And I’m not opposed to ‘you touch me, you die’ on principle, 100%. I’m not in favor of it as a principle, either. BUT some situations justify it. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to know 100% which is which– there’s the rub. if Blaine hit Amber or even grabbed her, I think it would apply–I don’t think she should have had to wait till he was choking her or whatever. EXCEPT that this is the Dumbyverse and she can take Blaine in a stand up fight…
Oh my GODS, look at that PUNCH! Could Amber secretly be -?
*Shakes head* Nah, that’d be ridiculous. It can’t be her.
That’s it! It all adds up! Amber is secretly an amateur boxer training to fight world heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko!
*Gasp* It all makes sense now!!!
She’ll most likely lose that fight, but at least she stands the chance to come out of retirement a few years later to do battle with an Iranian superman and single handedly end the crisis in the Middle East.
Wait, there was a grappling hook in the closet!
Could Amber be… Amazi Girl’s sidekick, Astoundo?
Obviously Dinah is Amazi Girl in this scenario.
What are you talking about? Amber is clearly Spider-Car.
She hides the tires in her shirt.
The last panel was awesome, saw that coming the moment he opened his mouth…
Now that’s what I call an Amber Alert!
You win the internetz^^^^^
While Amber’s on a roll, can she go ahead and bongo-slap Faz as well? Not sure he totally deserves it at the moment, but think of it as a Lifetime Achievement smackdown…
As much as I am happy hat Amber got her badass catharsis, I am concerned for what happens next.
I mean, Blaine is a six foot something veteran with no compunctions about domestic violence, and Amber is kind of tiny. I hope he stays down.
Question is: How evil is Willis and how much does he want to hurt Amber?
Because if he really, really wants to hurt Amber the next comic will go like this: Blaine stands up, rubbing his jaw. Blaine looks at Amber and says “Now there’s Daddy’s Little Girl.” Amber with look of horror on her face. Amber sees all three Sarazus looking at her in shock and is even more horrified at having lost control like that.
Remember, Amber started being Amazi-Girl as a way of dealing with her violent impulses. I doubt she much likes that side of herself, especially if it reminds her of her father.
I keep seeing this line ” I doubt she much likes that side of herself…” Or somthing like it in the comments. I feel that you all should take a good look at Amber’s character here. She clearly loves comic books, and heroes, being one is most likely something she does for a number of reasons, healthy emotional disposal of rage at he father being just one of them. Even if this act of standing up to her father helps to alleviate some of that pain its not going to change her inherent willingness to fight. So long as she is willing to fight under the guise of being a socially acceptable vigilantly, violence is something she will continue to embrace and enjoy.
Which in my opinion is a good thing.
It’s not the violence that I think she won’t like. Her reaction here appears to me as a loss of control, not a decision. She was trying to avoid violence, but he pushed her too far and made her too angry.
If punching him had been an intentional act I think she’d be okay with it, but as an emotional reaction I think she’ll have issues with it.
Besides, it kinda breaks her compartmentalization: http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/02-guess-whos-coming-to-galassos/compartmentalize/
Given that the focal point of a lot of her anger and violent tendencies is Blaine, I wouldn’t be surprised if she justifies any and all acts of violence towards him as further “compartmentalization.”
AMBER STRONGEST THERE IS!!!
AMBER SMASH ASSHOLE FATHER!!!
DAMN WILLIS! These last few strips have been a little painful to read, as the dirtbag really sickens me. That being said, the fact that you are able to invoke such a powerful feeling through your work is truly incredible. Even though I absolutely hate Amber’s son-of-a-bongo dad, I love to hate him. You truly have outdone yourself with these characters. Keep up the incredible work, I’ll be right here getting goosebumps with each new strip.
I like the similarities between Amber’s angry face here and her nervous smile in SP!. I don’t know if it was at all intentional, but I like the parallelism.
A smile is just a frown turned upside-down.
Never back a superheroine into a corner!
Also, Dina’s mum in Original!Dina’s hat. Yaaaaaaaaaay
I asked before, it’s different
As someone who has a tumultuous relationship with his own father, this was startlingly cathartic.
When Ryan caught a face full of glass, I actually felt a measure of pity. But at this strip? I felt satisfaction.
It’s telling that Amber’s dad manages to be less sympathetic than a rapist.
Official best strip of this comic, period.
Knock him out the window! And don’t open it first…
IVE WANTED TO DO THAT 2 COMIC STRIPS AGO
As satisfying as this was, I don’t think this will end well for our poor hero. He’s a big guy. And a jerk. If he doesn’t retaliate physically, he might financially…
Then she’ll just have to get a job…?
FINALLY. Seriously, that guy is such an asshole I wanted to beat the shit out of him right after the first sentence that came out of his mouth.
That fifth panel is so spectacular that it completely overshadows the fact that Mrs. Saruyama speaks in the first panel.
And Mrs. Surayama speaking completely overshadows the fact that Mr. Suyrayama is obviously pondering which technique would be best to subdue the giant angry man and his offensive son.
Here comes the BOOM!
I wish I did this to my own father!
She clearly lifts……
an enthusiastic YES!!!!!
Yeah, panel five is orgasmic, but I would like a large version of panel four even more.
Nice work, Willis. Kudos.
EXPLETIVE DELETED YES.
Thank you so much, David Willis. Just thank you.
(Small imaginary fist-pump at desk)
I just realized, Dina’s parents are the best parents in this storyline. They made a mistake, and actually owned up to it and regretted it and stuff. They are literally the only ones who admit their faults. That’s kind of a low bar, but here we are.
Before I actually started to read Dumbing of Age, I already spoilered me a bit by reading recent strips like this one.
But now, after getting here from the start, I can appreciate this particular strip even more.
And I must say, one of the many great things of DoA is that Blaine is still alive so Amber can beat the crap out of him.
But of course, the way how Mike said bye to Blaine in Shortpacked is still awesome.
Panel two: three false statements in a row. You should do better, Blaine. (The university owns the room, no person can be legally owned in the United States, and nothing appears to be preventing Amber from speaking as she chooses.)
no san diego comic-con, the sorries
Who should get doodled inside Dumbing of Age Book 5?
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