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  • ClockworkDawn

    I ain’t saying she a gold digger…

    • shink55

      Alison probably has more money then he does…Not to mention how much money she could make if she decided it was a priority.

  • begalund

    I swear, every single time I see him in close up, he just looks evil. I think it has to be the shape of his eyes. Slightly slanted, almond shaped, and narrow. Must be the classic “this is an evil look” sort of thing that it triggers.

    He’s probably perfectly fine, the nicest guy ever, and he’ll die in some utterly tragic way and leave our hero to do the “lash out at the world” thing in grief.

    (or he really is evil, and I’ve seen through it the entire time….)

  • Richard Hughes

    Two very privileged people, these!

  • Richard Griffith

    A crack in his prefectness. He does not know the working folk.

    • Some guy

      Unless the next panel is “Oh wait, yes I do! It’s ME!” to show off that he’s also artistic.

  • chaosvii

    They’re all done by his secret siblings his parents keep trapped in the evil underground lair made out of piles of money!

  • Insanenoodlyguy

    Oh dear this boy is too rich.

  • Richard Hughes

    He’s polite! He’s friendly. He has a sense of panache, and a sense of humor.

  • Richard Hughes

    Oh, she probably has way more money than he does 😀

  • Some guy

    And right after her pet project started having money problems too!

  • screechfox

    Oh. Oh, I want to like Max. I really do. He seems to mean well, but he’s clearly also a guy who’s doesn’t think about his privilege (as opposed to Alison, who does her best to think about her privileges and her disadvantages) and is kind of used to getting his way.

    I foresee this going one of two ways: Alison will realise they’re kind of incompatible, and she’ll try and explain and break it off with him (which may lead to good conversations or more unsavory thngs), or Alison explaining and him making an effort to change, with them both offering ideas to each other. I see the former as more likely. (There are other possibilities, but with the themes of this comic, these seem most likely.)

    • Richard Hughes

      I don’t know… Being rich and white and male might be just enough privilege to let him see eye to eye with someone who is invulnerable and can fly and punch through tempered steel!

  • Roman Snow

    Naw, previous strips presented Clevin as the safe, boring option. Max has always been the “unreasonably charming” option.

  • Johan

    Yep, makes sense :)

  • Hawthorne

    “They used to be real animals, but our taxidermist dabbles in botany, and, well…”

  • Lostman

    Well due to genre convention everything we know about superhero stories (and others) tell us to noot trust Max.

  • Tylikcat

    I honestly think most supervillains are more interesting.

    For instance, Patrick.

  • Tylikcat

    I am willing to take as given that there are good narrative reasons why Patrick has to be off getting himself together. I mean, seriously, Patrick has to get himself together – and that could totally be another strip* – but it makes sense that it’s going to be a bit before it can usefully intersect with Max’s timeline.


    I am sure that this is going to make more sense soon…?

    * I have elsewhere expressed an interest an watching many episodes of “The Universe Instrusive Slaps Patrick Upside the Head”

  • SuddenFan

    2) He seems well-meaning
    3) ???

  • SuddenFan

    Re: bullet 4

    You just never stop diagnosing, do you?

    • ∫Clémens×ds

      My bad, I forgot:

      • chaosvii

        Sarcastic diagnosis is still engaging in a diagnosis for the sake of humor.

        • ∫Clémens×ds

          Hm. Yes. But. A facetious one. Not worth much salt psychoanalysis-wise.

  • Katie RL

    That was my assumption too! Reading all the comments, I can see how he might just be privileged/unaware, but my first thought was definitely WATCH OUT AL, HE’S GOT PLANT POWERS

    • Darkoneko Hellsing

      Oh, no, not her boyfriend. I’m pretty sure they leave common people to tend to that.

  • Hiram

    The bottle was clearly so Alison could christen the redund-o-copter for it’s maiden flight.
    Yes, I know that only raises more questions.

    • ∫Clémens×ds

      Oh my God.
      Max is a secret biodynamic whose superpower is making helicopters appear.
      Best. Character. Ever.

  • Thursday Violist

    Oh, no! Money! My only weakness!
    ~Allison, when Max turns supervillain on her.

    Or, alternatively, she finds out that Max and Patrick are brothers. It makes sense, right? while one of them knows exactly what to say to make Al swoon, the other always says the exact wrong thing. What else are brothers for?

  • ∫Clémens×ds

    I mean obviously Poe’s law and all but damn if I wasn’t sure it would be obvious from putting everything on the same level as not having a particular interest in garden sculpture that it was a joke

    • Rumble in the Tumble

      When you’re doing an “Arson, murder, and jaywalking,” only the last thing mentioned is a joke. So, a victory for Not Understanding Sarcasm on the Internet, I guess :v

  • ∫Clémens×ds

    That’s interesting. And absolutely not my experience, at all.

    • chaosvii

      Well yes, the people that don’t follow that rule are very often people who are uncomfortable with their own feelings, and so throw a smokescreen up to avoid addressing whatever they feel at any given moment.
      I really don’t appreciate the company of such folks, as their sarcasm is of middling quality, and is frequently only an indication of their genuine nature insofar as it displays how petty they are about a given matter. Which goes against the very spirit of using a petty facade to induce mirth in others by my reckoning.

      If I saw Max as such a person, I’d be very cross about him, rather than largely ambivalent about his moral fibre & more interested in his humorous disposition,

      • ∫Clémens×ds

        That explains your indulgence.
        I have to say, if the only way to differentiate between the two is quality of humor, I’m not convinced with that specific one. The “unwarranted” part was genuine.
        I’m an only child, unless if I had dead big siblings, ahah, erm

  • ∫Clémens×ds

    Even Alison says he has weird notions of what being even means and is for. Do you realize how cringeworthily transparent something must be in order for Alison to realize it?

    • chaosvii

      She didn’t say that he was trying to one up her, that’s what you read out of it, she said different words that could be interpreted in additional ways.
      And even if she thought as you do, it would still be presumptive. I’d imagine you’d have no problem with the statement Alison could be wrong about yet another thing. 😛

      • ∫Clémens×ds

        I agree with the entirety of that statement but I’d be offended you would consider I didn’t take my own subjectivity into account. Or is it that the infinite interpretability of fiction puts a relativistic shade on only my own?

  • ∫Clémens×ds

    So I’m going to do a complete one eighty on everyone and say that… I actually have no issue with Max not knowing his gardener’s name. (But hold your gasps for the fateful day I will deem one of Alison’s action as *not* a complete disaster, which I’m still hopeful for)

    Given how it’s framed as the last sentence of the page, with an odd emphasis if it were to be just a character building element and not what will surely become the starting point of a fully fledged plot thread, the insufferable contrarian in me is already readying himself to “well, actually” away his lack of responsibility toward his parents’ employees with the added bonus of sigh-inducing in-universe justifications nowhere supported by the text like, I dunno, “he’s not necessarily living here all year” or something.

    This was a long sentence.

    • chaosvii

      I mean there’s all that, and also the fact that no one is obligated to express offense at the fact that he’s honestly expressing something that he’s not aware of in a fashion that doesn’t even imply that he has no interest in ever learning this information. It’s a reaction that some people have, and opt to rationalize, and some people don’t, and had no idea that it requires rationalization. And yet still others who don’t have the reaction of “how dare he not meet one of my standards!” recognize that he’s violated other standards before, yet hasn’t this time.

      Falling into the third camp is really not all that novel once you read so many stories that you internalize that some characters were not written with you in mind. That the intentionality bias is simply a cognitive fault everyone deals with from time to time. And whatever you feel about a given character that hasn’t been the worst thing ever reflects on what you want out of people rather than what people really ought to be doing (which has been determined long ago because obviously all of humanity had a decisive vote about whether a guy should know all the people who effect his life pretty directly or not).

  • Gluten Tag

    You made me laugh. Shame on you. 😉

    • Graeme Sutton

      That laugh? Also racist.

  • TRenn

    Maybe he was being literally serious about siblings “trapped under big piles of money,” but it was because they all took “Duck Tales” as a documentary and tried swimming in a pool full of money a la Scrooge McDuck.

    That’s plausable, right? >.> <..>

  • M. Alan Thomas II

    I agree with all of your points but counter with The Law of Conservation of Detail. What’s the point of the conversation otherwise? :)

    Actually, I’m reasonably certain that you’re right and that there will be an interesting take on that tomorrow, because otherwise there’s no reason for it to be a cliffhanger line. (You could drop the first panel and add one at the end if you were going to continue in the obvious vein.)

  • Dean

    ‘We’ve tried everything to stop it! Traps, poison baits… we even sat up all night one time, waiting for someone to show up! No-one came, and in the morning, all we found was a bush sculpted into the shape of a giant hand flipping us the bird!”

    • chaosvii

      “And the next day, it was re-sculpted into a dove!”

  • Soqoma

    I also really miss Patrick (and the ethical conundrums that he represented).

  • Soqoma

    His sense of humor is definitely the only thing keeping my interest/tolerance of this guy going, and it is STRAIN-ING. (if this was choose-your-own-adventure, I would have stayed at the concert….and probably dating Lisa, but that’s neither here nor there)

  • Christophe2314

    3) Profit!!!

  • http://www.zachgoldie.com/ ZBass

    Perhaps it requires a modified ‘choose your own adventure’, where you get to pick which character you follow for the next chapter?

    • Aurabolt

      Honestly? I’m still entirely convinced Max might be a plant by Patrick, in order to keep tabs and, in some way, to keep himself involved in Allison’s life while not consciously being there. He was pretty shaken up the last time we saw him-with his superior intellect and understanding of people, I wouldn’t be surprised if this was the case.

      If nothing else, I like Max…but if he is a plant, he might fall in love with her for real? Who knows at this stage, but I’m waiting to find out.

  • Eliza

    I still don’t trust him and I don’t know why, this is very conflicting

  • masterofbones

    Could also be a “batman”. Fun-loving rich-kid by day, vigilante for justice by night. Desires to make connections with Alison, but needs a good cover for doing so.

  • Abel Undercity

    He does’t know the name of his gardener. Dump him.

  • Flipz

    While the first three points are mostly fair, I feel like number 4 doesn’t really apply. I wouldn’t expect to have to remember the name of every fast-food worker I’ve been served by, but I would make the effort for, say, a waiter or waitress who repeatedly serves me at a restaurant I go to a lot. That holds doubly true if the person is working for me in my own home (or my parents/my parents’ home, if it’s a family home I’m living in).

    Now, granted, it’s likely that Max’s parents either use a service or have changed employees since Max moved out, so I still wouldn’t expect him to know the peoples’ names, but if he’s spending any significant amount of time there I’d expect him to know at least some of the regular help by name; it’s only polite, after all.

    • Tylikcat

      For that kind of topiary work, if they use a service, it’s a hell of a service.

      There’s a downside to hiring a service – you tend to get people who are working for a service, are generally not well paid and not invested in the reputation of the parent company. Sure, there are exceptions, but they are exceptional enough that it doesn’t really count as using a service, and they tend to be people you hire for the long term.

      (It’s really different to get people to do routine landscape maintenance as opposed to do something stunning and unique. That kind of topiary is in the latter category.)

  • Markus

    I feel like it’s a tad hypocritical that almost every main character has ostentatious amounts of wealth but only Max is characterized negatively for the volume of privilege it provides.

    • chaosvii

      Well, you see, he’s uh…an individualist!
      And he said disparaging things towards no one in particular, therefore meaning he was targeting Klevin!
      And he… likes to make jokes when people want him to be totally srs business!
      Worst of all, he made Alison uncomfortable, and only apologized once!

      Due to this and the fact he’s in a superhero comic that is conventional in every conceivable measure, never deviating from overused tropes and predictable nonsense, he’s a villain for no actual story reason, and every bit of evidence that he’s just some rich kid is actually heavy-handed plausible deniability deliberately inserted into the narrative so that we can all be not surprised when the cliche reveal of him being evil or whatever happens. Which it definitely will!

    • Shjade

      It is, so far, Max’s main defining characteristic, which is somewhat different from the rest of the cast who have significant wealth. Who’s Max? No idea, other than that he’s fairly quick-witted and rich. Not really good qualities for making someone instantly likable, most of the time.

      We didn’t find out Al is rich due to her previous hero gig until after we’d already gotten to know a fair bit about who she is apart from that fact. Paladin’s position of privilege is mainly expressed via how she’s trying to create and help people and what’s holding her back from doing that as effectively as she’d like. Patrick is…well, Patrick’s kind of a jerk for reasons completely unrelated to his financial position. And so on.

    • ampg

      Define “ostentatious amounts of wealth” – Al only really had enough to keep her afloat until she cashed the Guardians checks (which she then sunk into Valkyrie). Pintsize was (and probably still is) subsidized by the federal government. Lisa is being subsidized by the university. Patrick is insanely wealthy, but that’s definitely portrayed as a source of suspicion WRT his possible continuing villainous activities.

      I do take your point that they’re all at least upper-middle class, which has quite a bit of privilege baked in, but I think Max’s level of wealth is being clearly portrayed as way beyond that.

  • Markus

    I drive for Uber, and I secretly resent the people who remember my name, because I can never manage to remember anyones name and them calling me by name in the little goodbye conversation makes me feel like a jerk for not remembering theirs.

  • Markus

    4.) He’s rich.

    • Izo

      You missed that also, he’s rich.

      And he’s rich.

  • Rich The Bluegeek

    “Bet this works a lot better on all the girls who can’t fly” Great line! But, being able to fly is still kind of a new thing for Alison, isn’t it? Not to mention the fact that he has the skills to fly a helicopter is still kind of impressive. Don’t get me wrong, not a Max fan, but the disconnect here isn’t all one-sided. Also, makes me think Max’s folks could solve her foundation’s money problems real fast, though if that happens I’ll bet there’s an ulterior motive.

  • Random832

    I feel like if you knew more about Gandhi you’d pick a different analogy.

    • Rumble in the Tumble

      Well, one could easily work him as a nazi and a pedophile, but shitty analogies and metaphors are my superpowers :f

  • Philip Bourque

    I wonder if he’s helping his friend whose apartment burned down.

  • Pol Subanajouy

    Oh yeaaaaaaaaahh…money stuff…

  • Jack Lostthenames Warren

    Patrick is a supervillain, Max is the 1%… KLEVIN is the only romantic side-plot of the PEOPLE!! #teamklevin #stillklevin

  • Kerrima

    I’m bored of this guy now. It would be great if he showed personality beyond “good-looking”, “has money”, and “occasionally sarcastic”. This comic has so many incredible characters, “male love interest from every rom-com ever” didn’t need to be added to the cast.

  • Raven Black

    Next panel, it turns out he’s kidding and he does his own topiary!

  • Amulya

    I know. Ugh. Why does everyone hate this guy? He has literally provided no indication of being a “douchebag” other than being really rich and privileged (which does NOT translate to douchebag). He hasn’t done anything positive either, granted, so we shouldn’t judge him either way.

    Seriously, the commenters are treating this Max like they treated that guy in Chapter 5 who said the Invisible Slasher’s actions were “Bonkers!” and “Just Bananas!!” before revealing he was actually r̶a̶p̶e̶d̶ mind-controlled in the past. Didn’t we learn from Bananas-guy not to judge on “privileged” reactions alone?

    • Arthur Frayn

      I call him a douchebag because that is how he reads, just as Professor Gurwara reads as an asshole. If you see no “literal” proof that Max is approaching Alison as a pickup artist looking to add her to his scorecard, then you need to reread the pages where he appears.

  • LaChatSayWha

    Yeah, she won’t have to waste all her time in that dreary school getting her MRS if she can hook this rich guy! Really, it’s just a dream come true.


  • Kid Chaos

    Max isn’t Batman material; heck, he isn’t even Robin! 😎

  • http://electronictiger.net fairportfan

    I still don’t like (or trust) this guy.

  • ampg

    He’s super charming, which I’m sure is very attractive to slightly-awkward Alison.

  • Izo

    Only if they get married then divorced.

    That was a joke btw.