bad vriska no

2

For all I know
The best is over and the worst is yet to come
Is it enough?
To keep on hoping when the rest have given up?

@kirvia

OFF-THE-CUFF HOMESTUCK THOUGHTS #5: ACT 6 HOMESTUCK AS NARRATIVE REBELLION, OR: ARCS ARE DEAD, LONG LIVE ARCS

DISCLAIMER       FRAMEWORK

[CHECK THE TAG FOR MORE THOUGHTS]

[Note: This one’s a doozy! Still kind of off-the-cuff, in that I tried not to stress out about getting everything perfect, but I did do some revision to make my ideas more clear. That’ll probably be the norm from here on out. Hope you’re in the mood for a long read and a wild ride!

…Seriously, this shit is like twenty pages in Word.]

In my previous posts, I’ve discussed a number of ideas present in Act 6 and Act 7 Homestuck that I think contribute powerfully to the ending of Homestuck, especially on a thematic level.

I’ve discussed Homestuck as a meditation on the nature of a self divided across the many timelines of a dispassionate cosmos, and argued that the Retcon, far from a drastic change in storytelling, is a continuation of that long-running theme. Is victory meaningless if one’s original self isn’t around to claim it, or can a coherent, archetypal identity can be understood as existing beyond all of one’s disparate selves? In the system of Skaia, Homestuck asks, how do we live?

I’ve also discussed Homestuck, especially Act 6 Homestuck, as a Gnostic work, the story of an escape from a cosmic tyrant, a Demiurge whose ultimate weakness is that he cannot see the limitations of the domain he’s been given. In the same post, I discussed how this realm of the Demiurge, Lord English’s domain, is constantly paralleled with the space embodied by Homestuck itself, and how the kid’s departure from the story evokes their escape from this tyrant’s space-time domain as it reaches the end set for it by Paradox Space. From the system of Lord English, Homestuck asks, how do we escape? And at the same time, in the system of narrative called Homestuck, how do we find meaning within its limitations, and how do we escape them?

These themes work together.  As we’ve seen, they echo and reinforce each other, provide parallels and points of contrast. In fact, I’d argue that each of these different themes are diverse manifestations of one larger theme, in the same way that individual selves in Homestuck can be thought of as manifestations of one larger Self. This overarching theme is present throughout Homestuck, but it reaches its culmination in Act 6 and 7, in a finale that drives it home in a different ways. To understand Homestuck is to understand this theme.

If someone were to ask me, “What is Homestuck about?” this would be my answer:

Homestuck is an exploration of the tension between abstract, impersonal systems and individual, personal experiences of those systems.

Abstract, impersonal systems are everywhere in Homestuck, systems that don’t always align with the desires, emotions, and goals of the main characters. The central question of Homestuck is how these characters will choose to understand the systems that govern their lives, and how they will carve out meaningful lives in relation to those systems. Gnosticism, metafiction, divided identities, and Sburb itself all play into this theme. As Homestuck’s characters decide how to live their lives within these many interconnected systems, they suggest possibilities for our own lives, for we readers also live in a world that also contains many systems and forces outside of our control. In their choices, we find opportunities and implications for how we should live.

You’ll notice I said there’s a tension, rather than an opposition, between individual experience and abstract systems. I think that gets closer to the truth of what Homestuck is trying to say. Characters in Homestuck sometimes reject its systems altogether, but just as often they exploit them or find identities for themselves within the constraints/opportunities of those systems. While Caliborn’s  Gnostic-style domain of control is presented in a negative light, as something worth opposing and escaping, other systems, like Sburb itself, are presented in a much more ambiguous light, challenging us to decide how we feel about those systems and the possibilities they present within their rules.

I’ve talked about several of these systems in my previous posts, but today I want to talk about one I haven’t yet dug into in detail. Narrative itself.

Narrative in Homestuck, the power a story holds over its characters, is another system which the characters of Homestuck are constantly fighting, exploiting, and embracing.

Because another word for those abstract systems in Homestuck is…

Arcs.

Keep reading

it’s 2019. two more 6/12s have come and gone, and it’s nearing hiveswap’s release date anniversary, the new 4/13, except it’s not 4/13. the new, larger fandom collectively remembers 2017, mostly newcomers lured by the game. the newcomers listen as a tumblr post exposits on the fandom in 2017. they read curiously. there was no update that year. all the discussion was over vriska and dirk discourse. most disappointing of all was that on 6/12 we shitposted on the actual website itself because the game didn’t come out. but by this time, everyone knew that. the admageddon is a famous event. all the new homestucks laugh. they have never known a world without hiveswap, and its release date was only [number omitted] months away from 6/12. they thought we were overreacting, but with no game, we were nothing. 6/12/17 is widely known as the most disappointing day in homestuck fandom history

Look What You Made Me Do!!!!!!!!
Not Quite Broadway Vriska lol

insp. 

this took me two hours. lyrics and description of what the inevitable youtube repost video would look like are under the cut.

[the intro to the YT repost is “credits” that just say “i dont own this!!!1 dont come after me!! none of the fanart is mine either!”]

I don’t like your little games
Don’t like your poker face
The 8et you made me take
8roke the rules, no, I don’t like you
I don’t like your perfect crime
How you laugh when you lie
You said the coin was mine
Isn’t cool, no, I don’t like you (oh!)

Pre-chorus:
8ut I got smarter, I got harder, isn’t that su8lime?
Honey, I rose up from the dead, I do it all the time
I’ve got a list of names and yours is in red, underlined
I check it once, then I check it twice, oh!

Chorus [cue montage of everyone vriska has killed]:
Ooh, look what you made me do
Look what you made me do
Look what you just made me do
Look what you just made me do
x2

I don’t like your hidden 8lade
8rings 8otherments in spades
You told me that I should have stayed
Took me out, in your pointy shades (what?)
The world moves on, another night, things gettin’ dicey, dicey
8ut not for me, not for me, justice sure is gettin’ pricey
And then the world moves on, 8ut one thing’s for sure
May8e I got mine, 8ut you’ll all get yours

[Pre-chorus]

[Chorus]

Bridge [the person making the video would attempt to find fanart of vriska standing on alternate vriskas. failing that, they’d probably put that rainbow filter on her talksprite or have a weird rotating apple telling viewers to just skip it a la karkalicious]:

I don’t trust no8ody and no8ody trusts me
I’ll be the actress starring in your 8ad dreams
x4

“I’m sorry, Tavros can’t come to the phone right now.”
“Why?”
“Oh, ‘cause he’s de8d!” (ohh!)

[Chorus, with more stolen fanart of vriska killing people]
x2