Save Our Erin (Winters)

Okay, so I had originally planned a two week hiatus, but it turned out to be longer. Here’s the funny thing: it turns out that you can actually be busier on Spring Break than you are on regular working days. Lots of spring cleaning, planning, and what not. Plus, I had this terrible foot injury. Doesn’t sound like it should affect my writing, should it? Except that it takes five times longer to do regular things, like going out and getting groceries, then it does when you have two feet.

Enough of the excuses! I’ll be back sometime later this week with an actual review. Right now, I’m still taking it a little easy. Kicking back, resting my foot, popping the extra-strength Ibuprofen … you know, the life.

Still, there was a piece of webcomic news that broke last week I couldn’t ignore, mainly because it concerned a character that I felt got an awfully raw deal.

On his blog, John Allison (Scary Go Round) mentioned that there was one character that he was never, ever going to bring back. That character was none other than Shelley Winters’ mousy little sister, Erin Winters.

Now I’m not usually a fan of sad sack characters. To me, they’re too spineless to be sympathetic. They’re victims of their own pathetic sense of self loathing. I’m not a big fan of Achewood‘s Roast Beef, Homestar Runner‘s Strong Sad, or that stick figure guy in xkcd.

But you know what? I really liked Erin.

She was such an odd duck. She was the most sensible, grounded person in the world of Scary Go Round. She was the only one who would call out Shelley on her loopiness … because that’s what little sisters do. And she was the series’ most dumped on character. Throughout her stint in the comic, she’s had her head stuffed in the toilet, had her man taken away from her by a close friend, and, had her soul … um … damned to an eternity in Hell.

The writing was on the wall when she drank a potion that made her tall and beautiful. It wasn’t because this was a terrible plot development; this event is what kicked off the awesome “Super Crisis Quests” story arc. No, it’s because a move that distanced Erin so far from her most endearing qualities seemed like a desperation move. Heck, despite giving the comic 5 stars, I thought Erin’s treatment was bush league when I reviewed Scary Go Round here.

Perhaps Allison had no idea how a “normal” person could fit into the SGR world. Perhaps he felt Erin was too much of a nag, a wet blanket that kept Shelley from going on more fantastic adventures. I have no idea. (Allison’s full explanation is in the print edition of Scary Go Round Book 6.)

All I know is that when Allison announced his decision to never, ever bring Erin back, I felt slighted. There are plenty of characters in SGR that are instantly forgettable, yet Erin is singled out as a character to never be brought back? Not Tim Jones, who has a pretty good excuse for getting written out? Not boring early-SGR gals Tessa and Rachel? After all the abuse Erin had to go through? And stuck in a plotline that’s yet to be resolved?

So it’s time Allison knew that at least this blog supports this woefully misunderstood character. Readers of Scary Go Round! Band together and show your love.


Clap, clap, clap clap clap.


Clap, clap, clap clap clap.

Perhaps this is all futile. After all, I’d hate to be the kind of person to dictate what the author can or cannot do. But fan support forced Arthur Conan Doyle to have Sherlock Holmes survive his last battle with Moriarty, Agatha Christie to write Hercule Poirot (whom she hated) until her dying days, and Ian Fleming to bring James Bond back from the dead.

Maybe, just maybe, my tiny voice can convince John Allison that Erin Winters is a very worthwhile character to have around.

About El Santo

Somehow ended up reading and reviewing almost 300 different webcomics. Life is funny, huh? Despite owning two masks, is not actually a luchador.

Posted on April 14, 2008, in The Webcomic Overlook, webcomics and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Well, that’s a bit depressing… I loved Erin, but you didn’t sell me on petitioning Allison by informing me that a similar movement forced Agatha Christie into doing something that she hated UNTIL SHE DIED!

    At the very least, I now feel retroactively sorry for Christie. Dammit.

  2. Nicolas: I don’t mean to suggest she hated writing, she just grew to hate her Hercule Poirot character. She still wrote a lot of other mysteries featuring characters she loved (like Miss Marple) and stand-alone classics (Ten Little Indians).

    However, she kept writing stories about Hercule primarily because she knew her fans loved him. (Or, as Wikipedia puts more succinctly, “She saw herself as an entertainer whose job was to produce what the public liked, and what the public liked was Poirot.”) She reached some sort of work around; Hercule became more and more of a background character in his own stories while the other characters gained more prominence.

    Frankly, I don’t know why she hated poor Hercule. He was like an early version of Dr. House.

  3. In retrospect (as of today) it seems like this was a ruse — you’ll never get THAT Erin back, oh no… but then there’s this OTHER Erin, who seems at first blush identical but has no family…

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