The date this comic opens on was chosen fairly arbitrarily, but conveniently the Whalemen’s Shipping List for that date reported on…almost everything that could possibly go wrong on multiple whaleships.

Lawrence is certainly the sort of romantic, absent-minded, melancholy young men Melville said the fishery was a refuge for. To read a piece about the societal self-consciousness I discovered among so many whalemen in reading their personal diaries, here’s a little bit of writing from me. Less Essay, more Sentiment.

↓ Transcript
Panel 1 [Lawrence turns to face his room, looking at the contents of his bag spilled out on his bed. Clothes. A journal. Some books. Some wrapped up provisions. He’s standing in his shirtsleeves, talking to himself.]

You’re a complete fool.

Panel 2 [shot of Lawrence holding up a newspaper as he paces the room, reading aloud.]

Ship Parker, went to pieces on a reef, four drowned and the survivors stranded on Ocean Island for six months.

Ship Maine, attempted murder of the captain by his steward for not being granted shore leave, two hatchet strikes to the head as the man slept.

Bloody affray on the whaleship Nassau—

This is going to kill you.

Panel 3 [He waves himself off, flippantly]

But it may not kill me.

Panel 4 [He braces his hands on the stand of a wash basin, looking up at the ceiling.]


It may help me, I don’t know, find something.

Panel 5 [Lawrence reaching out to touch the frame of the mirror, frowning at his reflection]

Something that can only be found by going somewhere where I know no one, and no one knows me.