Ah, Margo is back, and in fine form! "Keep your chin up! You don't want to start sobbing. Well, I don't want you to start sobbing. It's so unseemly to have emotions. Just, you know, smile. Ugh, but not like that, what is wrong with you??"
Well readers, it's the holiday season, so whoop-dee-doo, and dickery dock, and we're going to take a short break here at LLA3G. We'll be back with a big recap on January 6th, and I'll try to post some holiday goodies in between.
Uh, Dr. Bentley didn't say anything about PTSD, nor the weird claim that it could be cured. He probably thought Cole's long-term health issues might be single dad-itis, or chronic gym teacher hair. More importantly, check out Dr. Bentley in panel two. Where, exactly, does the demons' power get mitigated to? Could it be to a certain DR. BEELZEBENTLEY? Marty feels a pang of dread.
Monday December 23, 2013
Not sure what about the free hospital that "cures" PTSD made it the tough choice. Maybe it was everyone's unyielding support for the idea. Or the demon-mitigating thing.
We have phones and email... right? We have email? Because I'm pretty sure Margo's relationship with James Bond fell apart because he didn't realize he could just text her.
Friday December 20, 2013
Hahaha! Oh Marty. You could use a fresh start. Once Tori lets the kids at school know you're a $500-bill vending machine, they'll never let up. Good thing ol' Dr. Shapeshifter signed Cole up without his consent! The nice men are probably on their way to help him put on the funny-looking jackets they wear there.
"Cole, I'm not just a medical professional recommending you to the Governor Peter Russo Hospital for Veterans Who Have Been In the Strip Too Long, I happen to also be patient there! It's been instrumental in helping me work to get my medical license back."
Upstate? I hope Dr. Not-a-Doctor took a drive on the internet first. Or the phone. Although if Lu Ann's relationship with the Governor taught us anything, its that intra-state travel in New York is instantaneous, and fun!
Ohhhh I wonder what Cole's going to say. "I do, but they're really nasty feelings." "I do, but I'm a shapeshifting alien who cannot live on this world." "I do, but what are you doing with your fingers?" "I do, but did you actually break up with Peter, or did you kind of just turn down his public proposal, let him set you up with a ride, and leave him hanging?" (Seriously, when she left, Peter said he would wait for her as long as it takes. Uhhh... is he still there?)
Thank you for convinving me to stay another week in the hospital, Lu Ann. I actually feel even better than I did immediately following the surgery, if that's possible! In fact, I think that surgery cured all my other problems! The pressure from the tumor was activating my PTSD gland and my alcohola oblongata. And turns out what they thought was a tumor was actually just a wadded up $500 bill! Plus, apparently this "Marty" character was just some orphan that's been following me around! I'm a new man. And I'm sinnnnnglllllle....!
Just in case you were wondering, Dr. Bentley is giving the universal sign for "time to party," the violently shaken, overly-aggressive thumbs up. Either that or he's just having a bad case of the DTs.
Instead of going out to party, Dr. Bentley should be writing a paper for The New England Journal of Medicine detailing his novel brain surgery that requires no cutting into the patient's skull and a recovery time equal to how long it takes the patient to get dressed in his finest mustard overcoat.
"You heard what the man said! And by "man" I mean "Cole" of course, not some uncanny cannibal deathbot with the ability to approximate human speech patterns in order to lure his prey in for the kill!"
"Hey doc! Hurry up! I can't wait to see [acquaintance 1] and [acquaintance 2]! I'm out of pudding! More drugs? Merry Christmas! Where is [acquaintance 2]? And that crazy [acquaintance 1] of course! I can't wait to see him/her/it! I think I saw a ghost! Course clear, you got a card! Chuckle chuckle!"
"Oh Cole. Ha ha! Anyway, he's just off-screen, why don't you go on and see him! You might want to hold this bottle of Sriracha when you go see him, just for kicks."
Well that bombshell had.... exactly zero impact. It seems like the more Lu Ann learns, the less impact it's having on her attitude. "Stop punishing yourself for betraying your veteran single dad, who's struggled to overcome alcoholism and PTSD to raise you before succumbing to a brain tumor. I mean, five hundred dollars, what is that even? Ever since the Governor's prize patrol started funding my art classes, I've been spending that much a week on pedicures."
"But you didn't, so you showed you wanted to stay, yay!" "No, I got ditched." "Oh, uhh...well..... this is awkward...... can't you just like, ignore how you were completely hurt and abandoned by almost everyone close to you? Just get over it!"
But Marty, to be fair, just because Lu Ann is a little dim doesn't mean she's a loser.
Looks like the colorist was so shocked by the rare appearance of Lu Ann's hips in the first panel that he or she forgot to color in the rest of the wall. Luckily the wall-mounted table-height toaster is the expected gray. Got to focus on the important details.
"Hello, is this the service? Can you please tell me the status of Spencer Cole? Or... Cole Spencer? It sure is hard on everyone when you have two last names. Yes, I'll wait. What?? Five to ten minutes to talk to a live professional??! YES, hospital answering machine robot, I understand. I can handle it. I'm not some dumb baby who goes around handing out five hundred dollar bills to teenage runaways. But thank you for saying you appreciate my call."
"There's plenty of room now that I finally sold that other girl's stuff on Craigslist. You remember her, right...the red head? What was her name again...Tina? Terri?"
Friday, November 29th
"I hope you don't mind, but I'm probably going to leave some drool marks on this overstuffed, kelly green futon. If I start screaming, don't be alarmed. It's just my night terrors, and the doctors say I haven't sleep-murdered anyone for months."
Saturday, November 30th
Maybe Mrs. Ward is just a little bit angry at the world that she's had to go through life with her wrist attached directly to her shoulder. It definitely makes it hard to reach the receiver to her ear.
I like how Dr. Bluesuit is staring right at Lu Ann's triangle of flesh as she's talking about taking her dress off. NICE, DOC. The kid is only traumatized in the background from the thought of leaving her dying father, but no, by all means, you two get all excited at the thought of slipping into something more comfortable. Marty can always just... call the service. Whatever that means.
"Marty, your dad is suffering some complications from what I'm calling "medical cliche-itis." His condition can only be described by using banal phrases that give the listener no indication as to his actual physical state. I'll be blunt...He's between a rock and a hard place with his back to the wall, but he's strong as an ox and stubborn as a mule. We're gonna have to wait for the dust to settle before we know where we stand."
Man, see, this is where I really miss Tommie. It could've been her delivering this expository dialogue, instead of this anonymous Nurse Rachet stand-in. Think of how much that would've added to the plot!
P.S. According to Wikipedia, "nurses' caps can still be found in many developing nations."
Let us all mourn the loss of Peter's mom's "appropriate for a modern woman of her age" hairstyle. It had a good run. It's gone to the same mythical land as Gabriella's ethnicity and Tommie. Now she's just a generic matron serving as a dumb foil for an exposition of all the reasons that Peter and Lu Ann were star crossed. I wonder how that brain surgery is going?
Your dad and I talked a lot, and as it turns out, he doesn't even like his tumor. I don't even know why he got it in the first place! Ha ha. So anyway, funny thing... my name is Doctor, but I'm actually a used car salesman.
"And frankly, I do say so myself, because I'm the only one who will say it. All those malpractice lawsuits I'm facing for telling my patients not to call 911 have really taken a toll on my reputation!"
Thursday, November 21
"Well, the surgery he needs will require $500 upfront."*
*I know this isn't a thing that happens, but maybe in the world of A3G, it is. Imagine the look on Marty's face!**
1) I love Lu Ann's look of utter disinterest in the first panel. "I left the Governor's Ball mid-proposal for this and you haven't even called 911!"
2) Why would Cole insist on such a terrible and poorly prepared emergency response plan? Or was Marty just too busy with Tori and Lick to pick up the salient details?
Cole: "Marty, it's very important that you follow the instructions that I am about to give you. If I should ever have a seizure, immediately call Dr. B...."
Marty: "NOT NOW, Cole! Tori is coming over so that we can smoke vodka. Why don't you save it for your girlfriend?"
3) Why would you follow your father's wishes by not calling 911 only to go against them by calling Lu Ann?
4) Guess the Canadian province that Tori and Lick are in...Nunavut?...Ontario?
Oh jeez. How long has he been having a seizure now?? I'm guessing we skipped the panel where Marty opened the door and Lu Ann gave her a big comforting hug. Hopefully we also skipped the panel where the EMTs called to apologize to Marty for being so late. This city and its first responders!
I have to give Frank some props for Lu Ann's face in the second panel in response to Peter's ill-timed psychoanalysis. The bemusement, the backwards glance betraying her reluctance to answer/complete inability to fathom Peter's question. Although if I was looking for a woman with insight into what's wrong with me, I would call Margo. She wouldn't mince words.
Peter, how many times do I have to reject you? It's nice that you want to help, but it's not like your title and position would help Cole get the immediate attention he obviously needs. Stay and have a nice time at your little Ball, and don't let this little problem spoil your evening/political future.
While I understand the gravity of the situation Marty is involved in, I'm not sure that Lu Ann's response is the most sensitive. Then again, I guess if you have proposals constantly flung at you, you become a little jaded. "I know Peter, and the guy at the grocery store yesterday asked me the same question, so let's not pretend that this little charade is in any way important." Though I suppose he got his answer.
But really, my favorite part of this strip is that the band just goes ahead and strikes up a happy tune. Got to keep the party going, let's forget the governor's public humiliation and the distressed woman telling someone on the phone to call 911. We're here to dance!
I don't even know what to say about this! It's so ridiculous that I'm beyond quips. I could suspend my disbelief and think that a guy in a blue tuxedo could be the Governor of New York even if he spends all his time in NYC instead of Albany, and that while in office he might try to pick up the blandest trophy wife imaginable, despite her being unfashionable, emotionally distant, careless about silencing her phone, and dumb enough to think that an empanada is a purse. But to believe that ANYONE in ANY UNIVERSE is going claim they need to take a call FROM A STUDENT exactly ONE SECOND AFTER BEING PROPOSED TO in front of a LIVE AUDIENCE.... is a step too far.
Ouch. The guy who's about to propose to you in front of a live studio audience calls you his "dearest friend." Oh wait, I forgot, this is A3G...I guess by those standards it is the most touching tribute that a soon to be ex-fiancee can offer his beloved. Now cover your eyes...we can't turn back, and those snowflakes and musical notes look extremely pointy.
Peter draws Lu Ann close and... Lu Ann wriggles away somehow! As Ken alluded to in the comments yesterday, there appear to be several parallels to the doomed Linski group proposal, but I think Lu Ann is wise to it this time and she's trying to cut him off preemptively. I mean, guys: would you propose to your special someone if they said, "You're scaring me" every time you tried to be intimate?
Well loyal readers, I'm conflicted. As much as we all mocked the peter pan collared, belted, blush prairie dress, I'm kind of sad that isn't what Lu Ann wore. If Lu Ann is going to start dressing in age and decade appropriate attire, I don't know if I'm ready to live in that world.
WELP I hope you know better by now that to have anything interesting directly revealed to you. Instead of whatever compromising position Cole's in, enjoy a scene of the Governor with his mother!
Wait a second, Gov Trog and Lu Ann didn't even come to the ball together? He had to have his MOM drive him? And now she's insisting to hang out with him and meet his friends?? MO-OM, you are so EMBARRASSING!
Actually what's really embarrassing is that in these two panels, Mother of Trog already looks more stylish than fashion icon Zoey Ziggler AND Governor of New York Peter Russo. Seriously, I think this is the first time I've seen a woman in this strip with an appropriate hair style.
Could it be...
Cole lying in bed... lifeless?
Cole lying in bed... with Lu Ann?
Cole lying in bed... with Lu Ann and some guy in clown makeup...?
Cole eating the world's largest ice cream sundae, and he didn't tell Marty about it, that pig?!
I know the whole lifeless (or almost-lifeless) body thing is the most likely, but I'm really rooting for the giant ice cream sundae. What do you guys think Marty sees in Cole's room?
Marty! MARTY!! Your knocking would be more effective if you weren't simply punching the door, or kind of wiping you knuckles across it. But I guess it doesn't really matter since Cole is unconscious anyway. Way to ruin everything, DAD!
Can one get busted for talking? Is the A3G New York a hypervigilant police state where even the smallest violations of social mores are punishable and draconian laws instill a fear of consequence in the population? I would think that Marty would be more concerned about the palsy that afflicts her of late than whether Tori is ten minutes late for their running away from home rendezvous. She's probably just picking up a pack of Camels for the road...
Marty... I don't even totally get why it's important to you that Cole be awake, but instead of standing around and shaking your fist dramatically and waiting for him to wake up, you could go and umm just wake him up yourself? Jeez! Maybe this is meant as an insightful, searing criticism of today's youth. Ouch!
"I want him to stay alive and suffer through every painful twitch of that grand mal seizure, all the while remembering how I wasn't there to remember his medication, and won't be there ever again because I've started a new life in Canada, the land of dreams. When he comes to and looks onto the vapid face of Lu Ann, I want him to ache with regret at choosing her over me, and know that she will never be able to completely take care of him. But I don't want him to die."
That's thoughtful of Marty, waking up her dad for therapy, although it will be kind of a bummer if he sees the note she left him about becoming a teenage runaway before she even leaves. Which reminds me, jeez, what a terrible plan. I wonder how close Tori and Lick are to the Canadian border by now.
Holy cow! This real talk is taking a serious physical toll on these two ladies! These are the women vying for the affection of the Governor of New York?? I.... I have to admit, I though the Governor would be more shallow than this.
I think we'd all feel a lot better if you just ran away Lu Ann. Then we could see who Margo is eviscerating/how many Italian bambinos Tommie has delivered while on her Roman holiday. Now quit your whining and put on that lovely pink prairie-chic gown so that we can wrap this up.