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  1.  (10826.1)
    It's Thursday, it's mid-afternoon in London, it's another wrongheaded morning in Mericky, it's who-the-fuck-knows-when in Australia, and it's time for more Crossed Hideosity.

    Episode 20, live and free-to-air.

    Remember: Not safe for work, not safe for minors, not safe for people of a nervous disposition, not safe for gingham pleats, not safe for strongboxes, not safe for beer-swilling-slugs.

    ISSALLGONHORRID
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      CommentAuthornelzbub
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.2)
    Shaky you devious bastard.
    • CommentAuthorDethklok
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012 edited
     (10826.3)
    And I hate Shaky now.

    The thing about survival situations, even ones as fucked up as Crossed, is that everyone has to come together and pull in the same direction. But Shaky keeps rocking the boat. Cheating the lottery the first time was not cool, but understandable. Relatively no hard feelings, considering the circumstances. Buying off Don with Sofia ...slippery slope, but all right. But this? I think Shaky may need to watch himself. Setting a Crossed on Rab is asking for trouble, as the man seems like a hardass.

    The thing that is more worrying is the food supply. If the Crossed virus can survive processing by fish that eat dead Crossed in the water, the survivors are up the creek. No telling how common/uncommon the delayed reaction to the fish is. Reminds me of the 1st Crossed trade w/ the Crossed soaking their bullets in semen to carry the virus further and troll people.

    Thing is, Shaky is trying awful hard to avoid the lottery. But what I've noticed about Crossed as a theme in the books so far is an odd mix of 'light at the end of the tunnel/fucked up shit'.

    Crossed trade #1: Stan and Cindy recieve closure about Cindy's dead son and grow closer. They also have a friendly dog with them. Bad news: everyone else dies.

    Crossed trade #2: The father of the family was some jumped up religious rapist and child abuser. He got what was coming to him when the Crossed attacked their compound in the mountains. Bad news: the mother of the family deliberately infected herself and is now hunting the ones who got away. Good news: the survivors manage to escape a mass Crossed attack and find their horses again at the end of the story.

    Crossed trade #3: The survivors in that story find a man who may know about a cure to the virus. Bad news: He's a lying psycho who killed everyone except for the Final Girl.

    Long explanation, I know, but it fits a pattern. I get the feeling that given the focus in this story to Shaky skipping over the lottery, he might get exactly what he wanted, but be miserable by the story's end. He might escape the lottery, but everyone else finds out what he did and exile him from the island for being a snake. Or the Crossed invade Cava and kill everyone there and the ones out on the recon mission live.

    That's the thing about Crossed. You think you might win, then life fucks with ya.

    Thoughts?
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      CommentAuthorMalkydel
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.4)
    Definitely agree. It looks like we might be working up towards everyone turning on Shaky rather than just to the Lottery. Then he's screwed. You try so hard to run away from something that you end up smack dab in the middle. Narratively, of course, it makes sense for Shaky to go on the sortie, so we have a viewpoint character, but I've been surprised a few times now...
  2.  (10826.5)
    [snigger]
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      CommentAuthorMalkydel
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.6)
    That is a snigger of both evil and foreboding. It ought to be in red jagged font
    • CommentAuthorTundra
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.7)
    Trading TF2 Earbuds for "Red Jagged Font"
  3.  (10826.8)
    It's not like this is a promise that Shakey can enforce. Shakey gets chosen for the sortie, what's he going to say? "But I threatened to not shoot the crossed kid that was slobbering on you so you wouldn't pick me!" Yeah, that'll go over well.

    In fact, this is more reason for them to get Shakey OFF the island, on the sortie. He's both proven to be the kinda guy who can calmly watch a plusface attack, but who's also downright dangerous to keep around. If I were Rabb, I'd want him far away from me. Because if he's willing to do THAT, then who knows what he'll do to get other privileges?
    •  
      CommentAuthorErikCJones
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.9)
    He HAS to end up on the sortie, now that the two "leaders" on the island know he's only out for himself while they try to imagine that everyone's on the same team. That's something i've noticed about the Crossed series, while there is a loose semblance of teamwork, it's really everyone for themselves. Honestly, the Crossed make better teams than the survivors.
    • CommentAuthorDethklok
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.10)
    Erik, the Crossed do NOT make better teams than the survivors. In the Crossed: Family Values trade, there's a scene that shows the Crossed mentality and dynamic. A survivor was watching a pack of Crossed through binoculars and saw that when the pack got above a certain number(think it was 15, but definitely no more than 20) they kill off the weakest one and keep that balance. In that same scene it also showed that when there is no one to hunt or nothing 'interesting', the Crossed drop into a kind of fugue state, the craziness kind of magnifying in on itself, I guess. The third Crossed trade, Psychopath, also showed that packs of Crossed can be set against one another and manipulated with ease. In that situation, the survivors killed a girl the Crossed were about to destroy and blamed it on a rival Crossed group. It built up to bloody, brutal, beautiful war that took out both sides.

    But I think that Shaky fucked himself on this one. He wants to live so badly, but he's a coward at heart. He can't hack it on his own like that crazy guy who comes to Cava to trade, Jackson, can. He can't maintain vital machinery, he can't shoot like a champion. He's not mentally ferocious. There's too much of the old world still left in him, where those qualities we as the readers are now starting to hate would amount to really nothing because the world is sane.

    I think Rab has to get him now. Shaky crossed the line in a lot of ways, including using an actual Crossed on him. Rab can never turn his back on him now as he did in the watchtower.

    IDEA! Perfect ending to the story IMO would be if Shaky is forced onto the recon mission and somehow ends up infected. He makes his way back to the area around Cava because even if he is Crossed, he remembers everything. He then dies by drowning in the harsh current around Cava, or he's shot. End of story. Wheel has turned.

    Thoughts, Si?
    • CommentAuthorK1i1
    • CommentTimeSep 6th 2012
     (10826.11)
    The way I think it's going is- Shaky, through sheer deviousness born out of cowardice, makes it off the sortie. While the sortie's away, the Crossed attack, leaving Shaky the sole survivor, left safe but trapped on the far watchtower or something. The sortie returns to find him surrounded below by Crossed, but, due to the hatred he's instilled in everyone around him through his all-consuming need for self-preservation, they decide to sail off and leave him to his fate. Fitting enough, but I'm loving how the flashbacks are revealing how Shaky got this way, and how you can see his justification for his self-obsessing cowardice.
    •  
      CommentAuthorcurb
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2012
     (10826.12)
    That was a nicely tense episode. That slowly descending strand of drool from Boy's mouth? Brrr...

    This story is set to run for a couple of years, right?
  4.  (10826.13)
    *The webcomic* is set to run for a couple of years, yes. I make no comment regarding story or character.
    • CommentAuthorfenrir07
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2012
     (10826.14)
    Hello all!

    I've read most of the various crossed series and I find them to be, basically, the story of the Wold War II holocaust, only it never gets as far as allied victory. Like, say, the Warsaw Ghetto the situation will gradually worsen until it reaches the unthinkable and most of the people will die. One or two might slip away in the sewers to an unknown fate.

    I follow the story with great interest but I of course assume the people on Cava are as doomed as the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto.
    •  
      CommentAuthorErikCJones
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2012
     (10826.15)
    Dethklok, I see your points but i'm sticking to my guns. Fucked up though they may be, the Crossed are a community that is self sufficient. They can be fooled like any other gang (as in Psychopath) but they work towards their goals tenaciously, even if that goal is raping and killing. They always know where their next meal is coming from, because their next meal is going to be you or whichever one of them is willingly prepared for dinner. I do like your idea of Shaky being stranded in a sea of Crossed though.
    • CommentAuthorDethklok
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2012
     (10826.16)
    Just noticed that whenever there's a skip week with a interlude with Shaky's journal, the 'Dear Reader' picture is always a group of Crossed surrounding a tall post with a ladder out of reach. Could Si be trying to tell us something? I think somebody's gonna be left twisting in the wind regardless.

    It may not even be Shaky. Hell, Shaky might end up at the end of this tale off scot-free. You have to remember. This is Crossed. Sometimes the bastard wins. And the Crossed win anyway.
    •  
      CommentAuthorErikCJones
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2012
     (10826.17)
    Agreed. I love the picture of the lone survivor surrounded by Crossed. When I saw that in the back of one of the single issues I was all in.
  5.  (10826.18)
    I can tell the art team's having a lot of fun with the "gamescreeper." He's hideous.

    More thoughts on Shaky, but I'll reserve judgment for now. It does appeal to the anti-fascist in me.
  6.  (10826.19)
    Re: Strand of crossed kid drool:

    Great. Now I want to see a Crossed doing the dangling-a-glob-of-spit-over-someone's-face thing that kids do to gross out someone they've got pinned down.
    •  
      CommentAuthorcurb
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2012
     (10826.20)
    Spit if you're lucky.

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