Friday, March 30, 2012

Retrospective: Errant Story

Errant Story ended last week.  I've already written a Not-So-Wild Review on it, so go take a look, but I think I'll go over the ending a bit instead, then the epilogue.

The comic ended with a hell of a fight.  As I said in my full review, they really didn't get into too many fights, so when it ends on a big shebang like it did, it made the whole thing rather special.  The main cast all got their moments to shine as well.  Jon got to be useful while magic and time mages ran around making him look like he was powerless and standing still.  Plans were made, implemented and succeeded.  And Ian got beat down in a way that was unexpected but fitting and sad at the same time.

Two things stand out in that fight:  One is how Poe laid out how Ian's final end would come, and a careful reader (not me, I had to reread it) could pick up on what was coming, an almost literal Chekhov's gun, though I suspect that it should have popped up MUCH earlier to really count.  At the same time, though, it was a great way to do it and I appreciate it.  The second is that Ian's defeat actually combined two concepts Jon and Sarine used in their final fights.  I wrote in my review that I always fear characters having the same personalities, but it turned out they started thinking of solutions the same way.  I think it was because it wasn't grand or powerful, but simple and logical, and that won in the end.

Meji's speech to the elves is also one of the best moments of the comic for me.  It's a threat, a blatant one, but one that was tempered by the fact that she really didn't have any reason to kill all the elves, at least at that moment.  It's her maturity coming through at that moment, and showed she had most certainly grown form the little devil girl who wanted godlike power just to graduate.  Of course, she had already made the mages who ran her school look like fools by then, but it was solidified there.

The epilogue, though, proved that Errant Story was NOT Meji's story.  Or Ian's story.  It was Sarine's story.  She opened the comic, and she closed it.  She was tortured by the past, about a life she could save, a love she couldn't have, and finally, by the end, she found her peace.  Sarine was telling the story.  Thus the epilogue is perfect in it's nature and structure.  Epilogues are hard, as so many people have different ideas on how such things should end (see Battlestar Galactica), but I don't think anyone will complain about how Poe ended his comic.  I sure won't.

The future of Errant Story is, well, reruns. Which I think is a good thing.  I hope they get the Errant Tales stories going, but I can wait for now.  I'll still be reading Errant Story despite the reruns, after all 11 and a half years is a long time, and I kind of want to retread old ground.  Maybe I'll have something more to say on it in the future.  In the mean time, comics like Gunnerkrigg Court and Does Not Play Well With Others will have to take up the slack.

That said, there is a piece of good news this week:  No Rest for the Wicked is updating again.  One comic dies, and another rises again.  That's a good day in my eyes.

Until next time kiddies.

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