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May 4th, 2016

May 4th, 2016 published on 65 Comments on May 4th, 2016

These guys.

ECCC Overstock Book Sale!

For a very limited time, you can grab Vol 2, Vol 3, Vol 4 or Vol 5 of Widdershins for only $3 shipping within the United States, instead of the usual $11 I have to charge. That’s a pretty huge saving! There’s not too many of these going, so grab one while you can!

This only applies to Vols 2-5 individually, not the multibook pack or Vol 1. Cheaper shipping applies only to America, not Canada or other nearby countries, many apologies!

  • ThisCat

    You notice they’ve really gotten to trust each other, at least a little, even if they’re still not very nice to each other.

    • Rolan7

      Or “early reading practice” is a secret challenge code for detecting dopplegangers!

      • Darkoneko Hellsing

        Or maybe he’s actually trying to learn to read. Well… in the afternoons.

  • Tobias

    Buggerlips! Ah, how we’ve missed your refreshing discourse, Mal.

    • fyrehair

      I think that’s buggerups rather than buggerlips. A hazard of the font.

  • fyrehair

    As a non-Englisher, I can only assume that Mal’s gesture in panel 3 is very rude. Mal, no.

    • Unhooked

      Yeah, the two finger salute there is the same as sticking up your middle finger over in the US.

      • dbell5

        Is THAT what Churchill was flippin’ at the Nahzzis?!?

        • Euodiachloris

          Yes-no. The Victory sign and the other V-sign are not quite the same, though Churchill was referring to it quite cheekily. Mal is showing the correct use of the sod-you version. xD

          • reynard61

            Interesting trivia: The Churchill “V-for-Victory” sign has an entirely different meaning in France. It’s used to tell men that their wives are being unfaithful to them.

            • In Italy, the first and last finger are used that way; it’s not so much saying that your wife IS unfaithful, it’s implying that you’re not man enough to keep her from it.

              In a macho culture…

              • reynard61

                Just something that my mom told me. Thanks for the clarification.

              • Sanjay Merchant

                Thanks to you I’ve been struggling to come up with parody lyrics to “That’s amore!” to the effect of “That’s machismo!” :-P

                • Heh. Couple of things: the finger gesture is referred to a “cornuto”, which literally means “horned”, as in “putting the horns on him” . Similarly, in Spanish “cabron”, which literally means “goat is the term.

                  Also, for a window into macho culture – in Italian, “sorpassare” is the infinitive form of two verbs: “to pass/overtake” (on the road/highway) and “to be a better man”…

                  • Sanjay Merchant

                    I just figured it was a reference to what, in English, we call cuckold’s horns. Though why a guy who’s partner is unfaithful should grow horns I have no idea.

                    • The Wikipedia article about the term “cuckold” says:

                      In Western traditions, cuckolds have sometimes been described as “wearing the horns of a cuckold” or just “wearing the horns.” This is an allusion to the mating habits of stags, who forfeit their mates when they are defeated by another male. In Italy (especially in Southern Italy, where it is a major personal offence), the insult is often accompanied by the sign of the horns.

                      in Sicily (where i spent a year in the Navy), just flashing the horns at the wrong time and/or place can get you knifed.

              • AJ

                Just to be clear, we’re talking about what occurs in America as the “rock on” gesture?

                • The Italian derogative gesture is first and little finger extended, middle fingers and thumb curled, back of the hand toward the derogatee.

            • Dee

              Other bit of trivia–tradition says that the insulting version came from the Hundred Years War. The French would cut off the first 2 fingers of any Englishman they caught, especially the archers, so they couldn’t draw a bow any more. So the English would taunt the French by waggling their fingers at them. I can see where that turns into a F*** off gesture.

              • reynard61

                And all that the French could do once those fingers were gone was fart in their general direction…

              • RLB

                Unfortunately, actual historical research says that tradition is wrong on this one. (For starters, longbowmen were commoners and wouldn’t be kept alive after capture.)

                • Dee

                  Pity, that.

              • Euodiachloris

                Debunked. It’s probably just the flipped-around cuckold sign — something we got from the Romans, as did the French. We basically formalised which way to use it just to differentiate the English from French or visa versa. ;)

                So, yeah… probably stems from the Hundred Years’ War, but not because of bowfingers. :)

        • The rude one is the backs of the fingers. The V-for-Victory (later the peace sign) was the fronts of the fingers.

      • Not quite as strong, but that’s the idea, yeah. Not the first time he’s used it.

      • rainycity1

        This community is so educational ;-)

  • UhOh – looks like sloth is making it’s presence known. Yawns are contagious, you know. :)

  • I’m now reading Ben in Anthony Daniels’ voice. We should Twitter-bomb him with the Widdershins archive.

  • Sarah W.

    I so much love the color scheme on this page!

  • M. Peach

    You liked April so much you decided to do it twice? ;) It does sound nicer than May…
    Like the comic by the way. Hope Mal avoids trouble this time (though he probably won’t).

    • Whoops! In my defense, I was running on 2 hours sleep at the time of uploading. Fixed!

    • Well the weather in the UK is more like early April than early May at the moment.

  • Tikatu

    Early reading practice? Sounds like Mal is trying to fill in some of his skill gaps in the wake of that disastrous contract.

    • John

      Given the situation he was in when Margery Faribairn gave him that contract he probably would have signed it anyway even if could have read at the time. Hopefully that experience will make him more careful about signing things he doesn’t understand.

      It was interesting that Mr. “Always see the best in everybody” Wolfe knew better at the time while Mr. “Suspicious of everyone” O’Malley did not.

  • kuku

    Love these guys. But then I love everyone in this comic.

    • SandstormSinger

      I know what you mean. When I say Mal is my favorite, I really mean he’s my favorite of favorites, because they’re all so lovable.

  • Hurrah! My favourite character is back in the story. Oh, and that German fellow who plays the violin.

  • Chris the Blue

    Wake up, waaaake up.
    It’s a bright and beautiful day.
    Wake up, waaaake up,
    You should leave the Anchor, okay?

    • AJ

      The song I grew up with goes: Good morning good morning good morning!
      It’s time to rise and shine.
      Good morning good morning good morning,
      I hope you’re feeling fine!
      Good morning, get up, get out of bed,
      It’s time to get up, you sleepyhead!
      The day is rising just for you,
      And oh my god they’re coming for you!
      (Doodley-doo. Run, buddy, do! Doodley-doo!)

      Well, maybe not just exactly like that.

  • Euodiachloris

    Ben, spot the atmosphere, man! You should be a touch better after your run-in with Mal’s ability. No excuses. xP

    • Sanjay Merchant

      Well, he is speaking sarcasm, a language with which Mal is fluent.

  • Darkoneko Hellsing

    Oh, Ben :D

  • Mal and i agree – two seven o’clocks in one day is one too many.

    • I have to admit – i swiped that line from Terry Pratchett

      • John

        If you’re going to steal from someone Terry Pratchett is an excellent choice.

    • Sanjay Merchant

      “A Winchester only acknowledges one 5:30 per day. This is not it.”

      -Charles Emmerson Winchester III, M*A*S*H, upon being woken up at 5:30 in the “morning”.

  • SandstormSinger

    Waking up to Wolfe’s violin practice sounds like a pretty nice way to wake up honestly. So happy to see this trio together again!

    • Darkoneko Hellsing

      I must assure you, hearing someone praticing an instrument or voice every day gets tiring, fast.

      • Wrendragon

        Sure does

      • Sanjay Merchant

        Indeed. For a while there was a tenor who lived a few doors down. I spent an entire day listening to the last two measures of “Deis bildnis” I would’ve given quite a lot just to hear a different part of the aria.

      • Vegas Vic

        I don’t know about that, Dad constantly practices his flute, and before that, his mandolin, and before that, his guitar. He very much likes to learn new instruments, and he has gotten pretty good. For me, after a while, it just becomes background noise. My friends, however, are quite enamored when his flute comes over Skype.

      • Del

        You may like music, or not.

        The performer may be adequate, or not.

        But in general, it is uplifting to participate in someone else’s act of joy.

        My son was in the ARMY, and passed a lot of time by playing on his mandolin. His buddies commented often enough that is was pleasant to come back to the barracks and hear him jamming.

        • EstherTb

          Well, that may be nice for you all, but for me waking up to noise is THE MOST annoying the in the world.

      • JWLM

        If it’s any consolation — and it rarely is — being someone who practices an instrument or voice every day gets tiring, fast.

        I mean, think about it. The damned baritone down the hall running through that particular passage again and again and driving you nuts is running through that passage again and again trying to get it in his head. It stops being fun long before it stops being necessary.

      • The Wing

        Gotta agree; my brother plays the electric guitar and most of the time it makes me so happy to hear him practise for hours on end, but it becomes the most annoying sound in the world when I’m in a bad mood. And being woken up for any reason instantly puts me in a bad mood.

  • CFF

    With a welcome like that it’s no wonder he doesn’t like mornings. XD

  • Mornings are terrible things indeed, especially when unexpected.

  • rainycity1

    Interesting that he told Ben & not Wolfe….

    • Sanjay Merchant

      Well, Ben isn’t being cheerful at him.

      • Ben’s also the resident Malform expert. Wolfe might tell him not to worry about it, in casual optimism.

  • I’ve informed you to leave
    ‘Cause I can’t afford to lose more sleep
    There’s your shoes, and there’s the door
    Please don’t come here anymore

  • KaReN

    Ben is a painstaking person. He’s been studying up on ‘The Deadly Sins.’ I hope this all night reading helps when they face them.

  • Emily

    Good grief, Wolfe, don’t say things like that when you’re about to face a villain who really can disguise himself as anyone!

  • TheScribe

    Agh. Let me tell you, as a very-much-not-morning-person, I totally sympathize with Mal here. When I get up earlier than usual and everyone feels the need to comment on/joke about it, it just makes me want to crawl back into bed and never come out.