(From MS Paint Adventures: Homestuck. Click for full-sized BROOM.)
I think part of the reason I don’t quite feel about Homestuck as strongly as some of its fans is because a lot of the time I’m not quite sure what’s going on. There’s a lot of context to keep in mind at any time, and a lot of the time that context is necessary to really know what you’re looking at, as is reading the (often lengthy) chatlogs.
And then sometimes Hussie will spring something on you where none of that context will help you.
So, is this the real Aradia, or just someone who happens to look like her? What is she doing being held up by Scratch? Why is Scratch keeping her there? What are those cuesticks she produced from her hair? And what the hell is even going on over the course of this fight, anyway?
My personal theory, which has been that we’re seeing how Aradia died originally, seems to be buttressed by the most recent update, with Scratch’s asphyxation threat and Aradia’s “ACTUAL SUICIDE THREAT”. But that assumes I’m not forgetting that we’ve been told how Aradia died already, which isn’t entirely out of the question. It also requires explaining how we fit all this in with what else we know about what’s going on in Scratch’s apartment (to this point, the most likely time for when all this has been taking place has been pretty close to the end of the trolls’ universe, if not in fact in the Medium, requiring Aradia to have travelled through time and possibly space), though given how fast and loose Hussie tends to play with timeframes that may be a relatively minor consideration.
This sequence has been walking the fine line between wanting to know more about what’s going on and not knowing enough to care. We know who Scratch and Aradia are, so we can put names to faces, but that only raises more questions, and while most people are probably just waiting with baited breath to figure out exactly what’s going on, I wouldn’t be surprised if there are some who are just scratching their heads (no pun intended) and wondering exactly who “Aradia” is and what she’s doing there. The distinction is important: one is watching the fight with baited breath, while the other is mentally skipping it. Hussie has walked this line before, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned substantial numbers of people off Homestuck.