The Weekly Recap and Sunday Nature Talk

The major character this past week—no, these past two weeks—is Cherry’s garden shovel. Supposedly stolen from her truck by Diana Daggers, it saw duty in Diana’s hands the week before as a cudgel to lay out one of the thugs sent to stop Mark’s investigation. It then made a guest appearance in Mark’s hands last Sunday, celebrating local garden clubs. Now, our intrepid shovel is again asked to prove its metal…er, mettle, as Mark made a dramatic appearance yesterday to aid Cherry and her colleagues.

This past week was supposed to be the Black Rose Garden Club’s rescue of the bees from extermination. However, Honest Ernest and his associates showed up at the last moment to spoil Cherry’s plans. Remember, Ernie may be a jerk, but he is acting in his legal capacity as a hired agent of the Sunny Soleil Society to get rid of the bees. On the other hand, the legal status of Cherry and her squad is a bit murky. And Mark’s dramatic, aggressive appearance at the scene—brandishing the veteran war shovel—suggests a prelude to an act of vigilantism.

This is something we’ve seen before from Mark, but will he use the opportunity this time to forge a peaceful resolution? Or will he attack people in hazmat suits holding cans of poison spray with just a shovel? We’ll find out in three weeks’ time. Until then, let’s move on to Sunday’s nature talk!

Another nicely designed title panel today, one of Rivera’s typical “endangered species of the week” Sunday strips. However, to be accurate, salamanders are not reptiles, but amphibians that may sometimes look like reptiles. It’s a fundamental error that Mark corrects later but is not overly relevant to Rivera’s environmental message. Anyway, how about focusing a bit on why anybody should care about the fate of salamanders. That is, what are some of their benefits from a human point of view? It’s not that the salamander needs to justify its existence, but we humans often react more favorably when we see something in it for us.