First, let me get something out of the way before I have to put out fires (again): PANEL 3 IS IN NO WAY A SUBTLE ANNOUNCEMENT OF MY OWN LIFE. I know a few readers who might make that assumption, but no, my wife and I are not expecting.
Panel 1 is sort of my apology to Nikki. Of the original four (Percy, Jorocks, Nikki, Chris), I feel like I’ve kind of developed her character the least, especially since the Tornado! mega-arc. That is one reason why I sent her with Percy to the North Pole (it also just plain made sense given their relationship), and the following story arc was supposed to be Nikki-centric before I decided to end the comic. The dropped arc was going to actually have her change her mind about teaching (there was going to be a bit of social commentary there), her relationship with Percy (early drafts actually had them breaking up, but I dropped that), and would also strengthen Sally’s character, who has been even more neglected than Nikki…
I gave Nikki a haircut and reading glasses to make her appear a little more like Mrs. Claus. She’s still young, but it shows her aging. Watch for other things like this. The article referenced is a real thing, in case you didn’t know. I debated between that and L. Frank Baum’s A Kidnapped Santa Claus.
You can accuse me of playing into stereotypes in Panel 3, but from what I’ve heard from several primary sources (friends that have been pregnant) is that pickle cravings are actually a thing that commonly occurs.
Also, for those of you who like this sort of thing, the scribbles on the board is a font from Blambot, and it does actually say something:
So this one time I had a hamster. She was cute. I liked her. I also like marshmallows, but that’s a different kind of like, you know? And the way I like my wife, that’s totally different from both of those likes. I also like drawing comics. However, I have never drawn my wife, a hamster, or marshmallows in comics. I guess my wife was in that Pokémon comic. The end is now.
Okay, whether by saying something actually gives meaning is open for debate…