As usual, Mr. Important must claim center stage and insist upon jumping to the front of the line, to say nothing of jumping again into a storyline that is none of his business. Such is Mark’s insecurity.
Doc is still suck on paperwork. Cherry should be interviewing the pet owners, but I’ve already covered that. Apparently, that might result in a conclusion found too soon and ruin the drama. So, we continue with the mystery. Will Mark also get involved? I hope he beats a retreat and finds his own adventure.
Maybe Rivera is not sure that Doc (and Cherry) can carry the story alone. The same thing happened with Rusty. His Big Cryptid Adventure went nowhere, except for some comic (strip) relief. I wish that Rivera had more faith in the characters. After all, she is modeling their personalities as she sees fit.
Speaking of modeling, I notice some shading on the back of Doc and the lower areas in panel 1. Rivera rarely employs shading (or modeling). Seeing her employ a shading technique reminiscent of old-school Ben-Day dots is noteworthy. Is she experimenting? Could be a positive enhancement.