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  • Markus

    Now we get to the crux of why Alison still moonlights as Mega Girl: supervillains are a much bigger existential threat towards biodynamics than they are towards chromasomally stable people. Mary playing judge, jury, and executioner has killed maybe a hundred people, but if she kills enough people publicly then anyone else with the power to do stuff like what she’s doing is on the chopping block.

  • Pol Subanajouy

    I hope this isn’t coming off as a undue fanboyism, but I’m not particularly worried about Al. She’s handled Patrick trying to screw with her head with aplomb. I mean, Mary might be able to do it, but she’s got her work cut out for her. I ~am~ worried about Mary distracting her so she can plunge a knife into Furnace while she is distracted.

    • I’d go the other way. Mary’s absolutely gone full Poison Ivy and is irredeemable, and Furnace is one panic attack short of a megadeath accident. It’s what happens to Alison emotionally and morally if she loses her shit and kills Mary that ought to be of concern. Like any classic Superman type hero, she’s far more dangerous than pretty much any human-scale problem the narrative can throw at her, if she crosses the moral event horizon.

      Mary’s special-pleading distractive nonsense is annoyingly shallow and insincere. Yes, there are accidents and evils and terrible wars elsewhere, but Mary, you’re evil and you’re up to no good right under her nose. Fix the problem in front of you before you go off chasing other problems, that’s basic Theory of Moral Sentiments, elsewise you’re just a moral tourist avoiding dilemmas at home.

      • Pol Subanajouy

        Wonderfully stated.

      • Arthur Frayn

        For once I agree with you.

  • “No, see you could be preventing murders in lots of different places, and the reason why you shouldn’t be preventing the murder here is… um…”

    “What?”

    “I’ll get back to you on that, but I think it has something to do with justice.”

    • Pol Subanajouy

      “Look, I just really want you to go away. That guy, Furnace? I want to kill him. So…go fix something else…please?”

      • Lostman

        “Mary… your idiot.”

  • Lostman

    Well Alison… You left behind a trail of destruction more ways then one.

  • Elaine Lee

    Great page!

  • rpenner

    (interior, tight shot) Alison: “I didn’t come here to save Furnace!”
    BGM begins.
    (exterior) People holding candles start lining up in the town below the dam.
    (interior, ECU) Alison: “I came here to save you!”
    (exterior) People now lined up facing dam as music swells.
    (interior, ECU of lower face) Alison: “To save all us!”
    Fast-cut montage of stills of Alison in battle and fireman training.
    (exterior) Townsfolk sing to BGM:
    “Al-i-son, queen of the impossible”
    (SFX) Camera backs away to reveal improbably large candle-holding choir.
    “She’s for every one of us”
    “Stand for every one of us”
    “She’ll save with a mighty hand”
    “Every man, every woman, every child”
    “With a mighty …”

    Cut to dam exploding, camera pulls back to reveal that it’s some old movie being watched by bar patrons, including cameo by Sam J. Jones, where we learn it is the next day.

  • I think she wants to “save” Moonlight, and all biodynamics, in a moral sense. You know, from the temptation of becoming the rulers of humankind.

    • Arthur Frayn

      See: Jupiter’s Legacy.

    • Arthur Frayn

      See also: Miracleman.

  • “What’s the punishment for rebellion?”

    “Death!”

    “What’s the punishment for being late to post?”

    “Death!”

    “I don’t think we’re going to make it back to base in time.”

    – the supposed dialog of the detachment of Qin soldiers whose rebellion overthrew the second Qin emperor, thus forever discrediting the no-tolerance philosophy of Chinese Legalism – at least according to Larry Gonick.

  • EveryZig

    Basically her plan is terrorism. Kill people in an attempt to make them too afraid to do what she doesn’t want them to do.

  • Softy

    It’s called a gavel, Mary. Terminology is important.

    • Rod

      But by calling it a “tiny hammer” (which it effectively is,) she points out that it’s simply a small piece of useless wood that WE imbue with artificial significance, much like a good portion of the entire judicial arrangement. She’s calling it that to overtly strip away this veneer of significance, to further her point, not because she doesn’t know what it’s called.

      • Rumble in the Tumble

        And that’s why it should be called the LITIGATION HAMMER.

  • Jeremy

    Is Mary suggesting that the existence of violence and injustice in general somehow excuses her violence? That is a convenient rationalization. “Since society isn’t fair, I’ll just engage in whatever violence seems fair to me.” Welcome to the slipperiest of slippery slopes.

    • Rod

      Ironically, this is what we ALL do… the main difference is we just look to a power greater than ourselves (even if that power is simply a bunch of politicians, lawyers and men with guns) to provide the framing guidelines and boundaries. Mary seems to have decided that she is the final decider. (Edited)

      • Jeremy

        A key part of enacting justice through societal institutions (police, military, legal system), is that their is at least some potential for checks and balances in the system. As messed up as the system often is, there is at least some possibility of ongoing debate and review about how it should work.

        When a lone operator sets themselves up to dispense justice, there’s no accountability, no public review. It’s just “I think this is right, so I’ll do it.”

        • fairportfan

          John Wayne, Dirty Harry and the Lone Ranger (and other heroes in other genres – John McClain and James Bond, say) are heroes because we know they’re not going to make any mistakes; they’ll just kill the bad people.

          • Lostman

            At this point Mary is ready to jump… it’s weird that the heroes in marvel will refuse to kill and up hold the law but let Frank Castle walk around freely… anyways even if Alison talks Mary down, mmmm… put it this way; depending which state they are in, Mary most like get life or the death penalty…

          • Happyroach

            it’s also that the villains aren’t actually human, they’re two-dimensional irredeemable bad guys.

        • Rod

          Well, personally I’m not sure those checks and balances are nearly as effective as most seem to believe. That said, yes, clearly Mary has crossed the line here.

    • fairportfan

      “They all do it, why shouldn’t I?” is a common rationalisation.

  • Seth Brodbeck

    She’s essentially Yagami Light (DeathNote) without the god complex. She’s even following the same trajectory: Start by killing people who are definitely “bad” and a clear and present danger. Move to killing people you have a reasonable confidence are “bad.” Inexorably begin targeting the people who disagree with you and are trying to stop you, even though they haven’t harmed anyone.

    The idea being that eventually people become so scared that retribution will strike them dead with no defense and no warning that they become too afraid to misbehave. Not unlike that scene near the beginning of “The Dark Knight” (I think it was) where one criminal can’t get the other to collaborate on a crime for fear of Batman showing up and beating the crap out of them.

  • Perlite

    Oh man, all I’m thinking about is how much fun she and Pat would have together.

  • Rod

    I suspect she might have been inspired by that, but that really it’s all about the terror. Continuing to kill quietly would have had the same effect if it’s just about culling, but at some point she likely realized (like Patrick) that there’s no way you can cull people quickly enough, and moved onto plan B.

  • Rod

    Holy crap… it looks like Alison is about to actually step outside the box and ADDRESS THE PROBLEM FROM A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT ANGLE! She might actually have a slight chance of at least getting Mary to stop if she continues her train of thought… a slight chance.

    (I’m not trying to be sarcastic here. I fully thought Alison’s argument would go along the lines of “society says killing is bad, and you know it’s bad, so it’s bad, now stop!” Which would have really been hard to legitimately defend here. Instead, she’s apparently stepping back and trying to show her the *even bigger* picture so often overlooked in these sorts of discussions.)

  • Verdant_Samuel

    Good to see Alison changing from “killing is bad” to a real argument (I hope). Not sure what Mary gains by talking to her, since she’s saying fairly obvious things at this point… *stares at approaching Tuesday*

    • fairportfan

      Well, killing is bad – but that’s a general proposition, and every case ranges from somewhat different to widely different.

      But we’re not discussing the general – we’re discussing the Specific.

      • Verdant_Samuel

        In both general and specific cases, “killing is bad” is not an argument. If you agree that “it depends on the situation if killing is bad” you’re acknowledging that. If you’re actually saying “killing is always wrong, but the degree of how wrong changes with context” we disagree, and I’d refer you back to my first sentence.

        • fairportfan

          Sorry. “Killing is bad” is a specific and definitive statement, indisputable. It’s .bad because when you kill someone, you take away all their chances and possibilities. I did not say that killing is, unequivocally, evil

          Whether killing is evil is the circumstantial matter.

          The basis for all morality is (or should be) “Harm no one unnecessarily.”

          That last word is the snapper.

          • Verdant_Samuel

            Sorry, still no dice. Taking away someone’s choices isn’t inherently bad – unless you’re operating under a morality that thinks every human is inherently valuable (which is not an argument, just a statement of ideological position that is 100% disputable).

            “Harm no one unnecessarily” is useful, since indicates where you place yourself, but it’s not an argument any more than “Follow in the ways of the Lord” is an argument. For clarity, it’s also not an indisputable statement.

          • fairportfan

            Well, obviously we’re never going to agree.

          • Verdant_Samuel

            On morality, no, and that’s okay. My aim wasn’t agreement, but to demonstrate the reasons behind my initial statement, and why they’re logical regardless of what our conclusions are individually about that logic. If your goal in commenting was to reach agreememt with me, I’m sorry you’ve used time that you might’ve preferred spent elsewhere.

    • deebles

      1) Marie could be an ideologue arguing for her ideals
      2) Or she could be trying to stall for time while she thinks of the perfect illusion
      3) Or it could just be that she feels that Alison should return to the battle… Just not against her.

  • Happyroach

    It’s worth noting that we know of one person who could definitively answer the question of whether someone is a rapist. But how do we trust HIM?

    • Oakreef

      Well he can tell you if a person thinks that they’re a rapist.

  • deebles

    Whatabouttery, Mary? Really? http://www.jesusandmo.net/2015/08/12/about-3/

  • fairportfan

    “…and I’m all out of bubblegum.”

  • fairportfan

    Allegedly the most profitable hunting grounds for pickpockets and cutpurses in those days were the crowds gathered around Tyburn Tree to witness the public hangings of pickpockets and cutpurses (among others).

  • Johan

    Haha XD what the hell is this?

    • Stereotreme

      Distant cousin to the Dread Gazebo.

  • Verdant_Samuel

    I would suggest that you read up on both the Black Panther Party & the failures of “PR” as key to any lasting resistance (peripherally related: respectability politics).

  • Happyroach

    But then is the answer “Go ahead and let anyone kill anyone they want to kill”?

    • ∫Clémens×ds

      The answer is Mary is toi dangerous to live. And I’m not kidding. In the real world, she would have been contained/killed.
      But then again, all the powers-infused kids would have been. Too much of a threat to us majoritarian non-powered people. The risk is simply not worth pursuing any kind of different resolution.

      • Personthing

        And how would they have contained the really dangerous ones? Like, say, Alison?
        And no non-biased judge or jury would accept that argument.

  • Verdant_Samuel

    I interpreted that as being “you hold people with powers to a different moral standard,” myself. Ofc, supporting states having exclusive access to violence would be supporting patriarchy (assuming that’s Alison’s stance, I’m not sure what her stance is yet).

  • shink55

    I see comment like this a lot in this thread. The question isn’t “I’m justified cause all this other bad stuff is happening”. The question posed by Mary is “why are you paying attention to me?”
    If the point is to save innocents, welly you’ve got plenty of innocent people to save, what makes me so special?”.

    • Pol Subanajouy

      Well in my mind, it’s much more of a case that Al got caught up in this almost by accident (unless Mary was planning this.) Even before ethical debates on where Al should be putting her considerable power, it just feels like narrative/story momentum is determined to get her involved on this one. She got on Mary’s trail because Mary killed that one guy that Al was behaving poorly to that one drunk girl at the party aaaaaall the way back at the beginning of the chapter. To me it seems like that would have been the crucial moment where Al could have avoided get embroiled in all this, and I’m pretty sure her “crippling sense of social justice” wouldn’t have permitted that.

    • Walter

      Without any implications that would be a bit of a silly argument, right?

      At any given moment there are a lot of murders going on. The cops show up at one and the crook is like “Hey, why are you paying attention to me? There are plenty of murderers. Pick a different guy.”

      Lets say that the cops buy that, walk away and find another killer. What do you think he’ll say?

      But that’s not what Mary is saying, she’s implying that Alison is chasing after her in particular because of basically the Joker’s line. She’s killing powerful male rapists. Their deaths aren’t PART OF THE PLAN. She thinks that if she was killing the “right” kind of victims no one would care, and that’s why Alison isn’t stopping her victims, but is stopping her instead.

      Alison being the one who is trying to stop her puts the lie to it though. The motivations that Mary ascribes to her aren’t even credible enough to give her pause.

  • Rumble in the Tumble

    modern_feminism.txt

  • Oakreef

    You’re missing that a lot of the time rapists don’t see what they did as actually a crime in the first place. A lot of people see rape as this thing that is only carried out by rapists (read: evil monstrous caricatures who no one I know could be) in dark alleyways not by some chill dude named Miles after a party.

  • shink55

    It looks like were finally getting to the crux of this arc. The question posed by literally everyone (up to and including Mary herself) towards Alison is “why are you paying attention to this? If Mary is behind it, why does it matter? Serial killers are everywhere, why pay attention to this one?”. Were about to get Alison’s answer to all these people who have questioned why she’d take a special interest in one serial killer even given that that serial killer is a super heroine. Were about to learn why this whole story arc is worth Alison’s time, and in classic SFP style I fully expect to learn something that makes reading this comic fully worth my time from what’s coming.

  • Here is a point worth considering, while all murders are kills, not all kills are murders.

  • Verdant_Samuel

    Sure, I only have my phone so it’ll take a while but yeah I can resource up

    • Ralph, the Dire Opossum

      Thanks! I love that SFP has such a good community.