So Far Away
Original Release Date: July 24, 2012
Nice random tentacled man in panel one. This is a minor visual callback to the truckstop Mike and Stu visit (and wreck) in Volume 1, which is also patronized by aliens. No attention is drawn to it; apparently, they're just there and it's a normal thing.
This is one of Mike's few touching moments in the series. It maybe feels a little out of place when looking at it now because Mike is not normally this mellow or open to advice. On the other hand, I think it gives the impression that he has great respect for his father, and I'm certain that my feelings about my father are reflected here. I've also had plenty of difficult phone calls in my life, asking for advice on what to do, so I took those experiences and worked them in here, as well.
This was a tricky, but fun page to write. The reader only gets one half of the conversation, and must deduce what is being said on the other line based on Mike's dialogue. The idea Mike's dad, at least in my head, is trying to convey here is that true friendship goes beyond trivial matters like danger and threat to one's own life. He's trying to convince Mike to go back to Stu and Renee because they are his friends, and they will look out for him no matter what. If they are true friends (and it sounds like they are based on how hard they tried to convince Mike to stay), they don't care if Mike's chaos gene kills them; they care about Mike, and they'll do whatever they have to do to get each other (and the world) out of this scrap. It comes out a certain way in my head, but much of the fun for me is wondering how the readers fill in the blanks.
I wonder what Mike's dad thinks about his son, an ordinary guy with no super powers or combat training, being involved in a cataclysmic final battle which will determine the fate of the world? I'm sure it weighs heavily on him, but all he can do is give the best fatherly advice he can possibly give. It looks like it works.