1. Maybe it is a wacky curve-out earring – there seems to be another one on the other side of her face, though that looks a more plausible earring.

  2. But narmitaj, doesn’t it look like the earrings are going in opposite directions? The one on her left side, the part that goes into the ear is on the wrong end.

    I can understand this sort of awkwardness happening in a photo but not in a drawing, where the artist has total control of what’s where.

  3. The earrings had better be going in opposite directions…the other option is one of them poking through her neck.

    They’re both sweeping out away from her face.

  4. I rather agree, Cidu Bill – if they are earrings, and the colour strip pointed out by frosteddonut makes it more likely, then they don’t seem to have a very gravitationally believable design, unless there is hidden counterweight under her hair or some sort of fierce multipin grab system holding them to her ears.

    In the colour strip her right-ear “ring” thing is missing in the first panel, which adds to the confusion.

  5. It’s an earring and she forgot to draw the matching one correctly.

    Or it’s a lock of hair. But… its an earring.

    It’s just badly drawn.

  6. It’s a dangle style earring, where the stone is at the end of a short, thin chain (like you would use for a necklace). The stone is swinging forward on the chain due to momentum from the earlier (off screen) motion of Val walking into the room.

  7. What’s significant about this New Year’s Eve sequence, as we remember, is that at the stroke of midnight, Phil turns black.

  8. I agree with Susan. They’re dangly earrings swinging around.

    Alas, B.A., this is not when Phil turns black. I followed frosteddonut’s link and went forward a few days until he showed up again. Still white.

  9. Where is the guy looking just before he snaps his head around and notices her?

    Either he was talking away from everyone or the second kid moves faster than he can turn his head.

  10. I’m more concerned that the smaller child appears to teleport to the other side of the room between panels 2 and 3.

  11. B.A.: lol!

    Eliot has a loose drawing style, where there can be ambiguities with what a line actually represents. Joan (the dark-haired sister who lives next door)) has this fly-away hair that if you look at uncolored dailies seems pretty clearly (to me, anyway) a fly-away hair, and I think early Sunday strips confirm my interpretation, but some colorist of the dailies left the area between the fly-away and the rest of her hair white (instead of coloring it with whatever would be behind it, usually face), and the result looks like a grey streak in Joan’s hair. It bothered me, another example of bad color-in job, but Eliot seemed to embrace it, to the point that she started doing it that way in the Sudays, and basically aged Joan a little instead of just having her have a fly-away hair.

  12. Not that Ms. Eliot ever asked for my opinion, but… Unless Phil’s ethnicity was an important matter, once he’d already been visually white for a while, I think she just should have left well enough alone.

    Or alternately, made the adjustment much sooner: she obviously knew by Day One that he wasn’t appearing as she’d intended.

    But changing a major character after a year is weird enough that you have to write articles to explain it.

    Fun Fact: Lex Luthor wasn’t supposed to have been bald. He was a redhead and one of his henchmen was bald, but a miscommunication between the writer and artist get the bald guy identified as Luthor, and D. C. just continued to run with it.

  13. @ Bill – I think the point of her article (see the link above) is that she wrote him as a black character (and always considered him as such), but mishandled the visual execution (at least twice), although that wasn’t all her fault. The idiocy of letting GoComics handle coloration is clear when they paint brown on top of a monochrome half-tone screen.

  14. First time I noticed that Phil was black was after his aunt Susan was introduced and she was. I figured I just never noticed before. Since reading the reruns I found out that I was not crazy and originally was white.

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