Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I'm Deeply Embarassed I Didn't Recognize That Bridge

You can take her job, you can take her crush, but you can't take the sky from her.

Punch an' Pie, the sequel to Aeire's very popular Queen of Wands*, is consistently funny, but this week's strips really made me laugh. It's a fandom thing.

Punch an' Pie started off fairly slowly - reintroducing us to Angela, a supporting character from QoW who's the protagonist of this strip, and introducing us to her
girlfriend, Heather. We re-met Dawna and the other employees at the toy store where Angel a worked, and we got a sense of how Angela and Heather live (and how Angela's been getting along since QoW's ending). It's been consistently light-hearted, but not really going anywhere. In other words, establishing normalcy.

That changed just under a month ago, when Dawna announced the toy store was being shut down. That's a pretty major shake-up for this strip - not only within the text (as Angela's been working at the toy store for nearly a decade - as she says, it's the only job she's ever had) but for the readers. Those who've read QoW met Angela at the toy store - with that shut down, one of the major links to the previous strip is gone. I'm not sure what's going to happen with the other employees - Justin and Linda probably won't be wherever Angela ends up working. This isn't a high school sitcom, after all - everyone's not going to end up at California U. (or the ret
ail equivalent).

So, how's Angela taking all this?

Well, she just woke up aboard Serenity.

Generally speaking, the Alternate Universe Dream Sequence trope, when placing the characters within another established setting, only works if the audience is familiar with whatever property is being emulated. Since we love Firefly in this house, I'm all over this. It's still slightly risky, as Firefly doesn't have as large a base as, say, Star Trek or Buffy, but to be perfectly honest, if you haven't watched Firefly you are everything that is wrong with the world.

I mean that in the nicest way possible.

There are two things I really like about today's strip. One is who Angela's subbing for. Generally in this trope, you see female characters swapped for other female characters and vice versa. Angela, on the other hand, is taking Wash's place. That's different, and I like it (and it's really the most appropriate character for Angela to be). I'm idly wondering whether we'll see Zoe swapped for Heather (or, to really complicate things, Kestrel) but I doubt it. Mal and Jayne are still Mal and Jayne, so I expect the rest of the cast will remain the same.

The other thing I like is the last panel. After being chewed out by Mal and crudely propositioned by Jayne, Angela reacts ... with an expression of goofy joy.

Yeah, that's a fan.

Punch an' Pie
Writer: Aeire
Artist: Chris Daily

* The link leads to QoW's first strip rather than most recent because ... well, 'cause it's over and I don't want to spoil the ending.

Q: Will, haven't you already spoiled a good bit of Punch an' Pie?
A: Shut it.

Comic images are © 2007 Chris Daily and Aeire. Used without permission

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