(From Ctrl+Alt+Del. Click for full-sized The Talk.)
Oh hell no.
Near as I can tell, this can only lead to one thing: the dissolution of their impending marriage, thus causing two years of storyline to be reduced to “shaggy dog story” in less than three months or so.
I mentioned in my CAD post that I was leaving open the possibility of the miscarriage storyline being the start of a descent into First and Ten Syndrome, but that I also wasn’t ruling out CAD recovering from it. Things are not looking good for the latter possibility right now.
The silver lining is that the Lucas-Kate relationship is, at the moment, the only other piece of dramatic continuity in Ctrl+Alt+Del (not counting the main characters’ jobs; Ethan’s and Lucas’s have never really been used as a source of any real drama, and Lilah’s hasn’t even been brought up in ages). If the Ethan-Lilah relationship is reduced to “just friends” (going with a full-scale separation leaves open the door to more drama) it could mean pulling back from the Cerebus Syndrome ledge, returning to a largely pre-2006 status quo, and devoting more strips to wacky hijinks.
So it’s entirely possible that, far from jumping off the ledge to First and Ten Syndrome, this strip marks a hard slam on the brakes before reaching it. If so, though, it’s a clumsy way to drop the relationship, and it’s kind of doubtful anyway.
And if Buckley manages to throw in one more heart-wrenching dramatic turn into his comic, even after coming through with this? That may be enough to drive me away from Ctrl+Alt+Del.
Tread lightly, Buckley. I’m watching you.
(I promised two posts over the weekend and delivered neither. They are forthcoming but will probably wait until Thursday, and one of them may take even longer.)