Well, well, well: Bees, bees, bees! Is that the same house in panel 1 they were walking away from yesterday? Reckon so, no matter. Clearly, the Sunny Soleil Society had already been around these parts for some time before Cherry got into trouble with them over one of her landscaping projects. Wait… how long ago was that? I reckon in comic strip time, it had to have been about 2 or 3 weeks ago, right?
And here they are, the two former combatants, ready to uncover what appears to be some kind of statue of some “forest pioneer”. But what garden is she talking about? The surrounding grounds are not well seen, but what we do see appears to be pavement.
Back to the unveiling, it seems that this statue must have also been restored or replaced, if this is a proper unveiling. And where is the rest of the staff for such an important moment? The only other person belonging to this association that I recall is a middle-aged man in a kitchen that we saw in one daily strip back just after Violet tossed Cherry out on her ear. But that was about it. Who he was or what his job was is a mystery, except maybe as a springboard to help move the plot along.
Say! This must be one of those old Mark Trail traditions that Rivera snuck in on us—the temporary character, who is there to fulfill a short-term role and then disappear, kind of like the red-shirted security dudes on those “Away Teams” in the original Star Trek episodes, whose role was to die early on in the episode.
Anyway, looks like the unveiling revealed a large swarm of bees. Could they be those “killer bees” that Mark told us about a few days ago? Exactly how or why they wound up under this tarp, much less how they survived, is likely going to be a major part of this ongoing Sunny Soleil Society story, I’m afraid.
From a drawing point of view, I think the perspective view in panel 2 is dramatic and very well executed. The third panel’s “statue view” is a popular framing technique seen in movies and TV, where the drama is not so much the view but what is viewed.
It looks like Rivera has decided to continue Cherry’s adventure with Miss Cheshire, er Miss Violet, rather than ending it along with Mark’s adventure. This could be an interesting approach to have continuity on one hand, balanced against Mark starting another adventure on the other hand. But even there, Rivera has maintained continuity through the appearance of Diana Daggers. I know that Professor Bee Sharp has been brought up elsewhere as a possible additional element in Mark’s new assignment; and the appearance of killer bees (i.e. Killer Bee Sharp) here is hard to overlook. Still, Cherry had nothing to do with that particular adventure; and how or why the Professor would get involved in the Sunny Soleil Society’s work is a big stretch.
So, who is this honored forest pioneer? And what does the Society have to do with forest pioneers, anyway?