Ahhhhhh… yeah, some of you called it, last week.  I guess you got me on that one!  You always surprise me, folks – and let me say, I couldn’t possibly ask for a sharper, more perceptive readership.  You’re all awesome.  This page, also, was a lot of fun, albeit rather a difficult draw.  I’d be a poor architect not to be able to whip up some kind of cityscape, but the reflection in the water was a littler harder than it seems.  And finding period photographs of Singapore to at least TRY to make it look like something similar to the real thing, well… not easy to do.  So just remember, it’s an alternate-universe Singapore.

On that point, actually, I think I should be clear on something.  I really don’t want to sound petulant or disgruntled, because I’m not.  However, last year about this time, I got a large pile of very rude comments and emails regarding my use of the Russian language for the Federates in the story.  This time, things seem to be on the verge of swinging in a similar direction, so I want to make sure everyone takes a deep breath and realizes that this is just a comic book.  I’m quite sure everyone “gets it” by now, but just to be clear: this is not a comic about the relative merits of democracy versus communism, nor am I trying to “push” some kind of agenda on anyone.  These are just things happening in this particular “sidewise” version of Earth, and it’s developed naturally according to a few setup rules I made at the beginning of the project.   So, I’m not really interested in having some kind of debate about what communists or Western democrats “would” or “would not” do in any given situation in the story, or whether something is “fair” or “unfair” to one side or the other.  Both sides are unfair to each other – that’s the point.

I only mention it to head off the fact that last week’s bit of anti-communist rhetoric, which was part of the storyline, seemed to sidetrack people with preconceived notions (in both directions) about this or that aspect of what my supposed political ideology was or was not.  It raised a couple of hackles, and I was compelled to perform some rather strident comment moderation, in the interests of congeniality overall, as well as preventing what was clearly some attempts at trolling and counter-trolling.  Anyone who has been reading my stuff long enough knows what I stand for, and I’m not going to do any grandstanding about it.   Just try to “go with the flow,” here, and enjoy the comic for what it is – and be nice to each other, and polite to us all.

So, all that aside, let me just say that once again, the positive and “on-target” response vastly outweighed the negativity, so to all of you, thanks so much!  It’s been an interesting week, and this one promises to be busy once again, but, well… we all just keep on moving, I suppose.  So, until next time, all the best, folks!