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Easter Eggs: "Yale" in bushes. "Question Yale" on hat. "Zero Ethos" on shirt. Radwimps (superlative weakling) on poster. The ending is a reference to The Courier and to a lesser extent, the Sopranos.
Fun Facts: Today's setting is just outside of JE-E. My final Herald was #22, and my final YDN is #111 (and not a zero to be seen), weird huh?
You know how sometimes shows have music that plays during crucial times? Well this comic has one of those soundtrack dealios (especially considering the Sopranos' wonderful music cue technique). So just set this on loop, and you'll know what it sounded like while drawing this: Zero's theme, Nyao's theme, the setting's intro theme, and then closing credits roll.
Zero Zetsubo, did you get what you deserve or just what you always wanted?
Baa: I don't know how other artists do it, but for me, I sort of involuntarily match whatever emotion I'm trying to convey, which is why it's usually fun drawing Nyao, cuz she's always so happy, but man, I felt trashed drawing those last two panels, and even Z writing his letter. So, yes, you jerk, I got choked up drawing this, partly out of that symbiotic sort of thing but also because this is the last comic I am ever guaranteed to see published or even viewed. It's sinking in that this is it. It's like losing your identity, you know? Not like credit cards and numbers on a sheet of paper, I mean like waking up naked, homeless, and with amnesia. That's it. Nothing left. That's it. I've lost my identity.
Special extended, grand finale edition of the End of Semester Thanks section:
D. Kato for getting me started in comics all those years ago. David for stoking my need to do this for Yale, and for inspiring this website. Charles for letting me use my artist name in the YDN and for getting me my first gig. Jordan, Phil, and Tom for inspiring this series. Claire for Nyao's hairstyle and for making my YDN debut oddly timely. Takeshi Obata for Zero's hairstyle. Cullen for hiring me back when it seemed a little more formal. Ruth for encouraging me literally from before the beginning. Andrew M. for ensuring I never trust too much and for avoiding eye contact with me on tap night or whenever he needed to be let in to JE. Thomas for inadvertently helping my traffic with your antics. Reed for being just distant enough to help toughen me up, but just close enough so that it felt like there was something on the line. Pete for pretty much always being in my corner. Harrison for helping bridge into this new board and being almost too supportive. Sarah N. for making me look good on page 2 with her keen script-selecting sense. Heeling night and the people I met for making me feel like a somewhat valuable cog in a gigantic machine. Nicolas and Jay for being ridiculously kind. And Paul, for making EICs seem human, and even...neat.
And of course sincere thanks to all the nice people who've ever emailed, spoke, or otherwise communicated with me over this run with the YDN, and even when I was just at the Herald. It's been such an honor and I will miss you, and entertaining you, severely. Oh, gosh...misty eyed right now, I'll be honest.
Ok, that's it...
new art still coming up (including my comics' collected edition--email to guarantee a reserved free copy or pick one up at the gallery show!--it will have tweaked and even fresh art, so Z and Nyao aren't done just yet!). But long term, we'll see what happens.
If I never see you again, please know it's been the highlight of my life entertaining you through my artwork, and even through this site.
Thank you so much for everything,