The Seven Deaths of the Empress
January 8, 2015 3:34 PM   Subscribe

The unnerving comics of Brian Mowrey.

- About Ducks
One time my sister blindfolded a duck, which made its True Eye reveal, from under the feathers on its breast. That's why I'm unlucky in love.
- The Memory Stone
I don't remember when it started. At first it was just little things. One night grandma woke up screaming. Now she never seems to sleep.
- TV Set Dad
Her father worked at the GE factory. One day, he fell into the vat where TVs are made. The first time I met him, he played Jeopardy. That meant he liked me.
- Your Android Body
Your android body is programmed to feign enjoying all your mom's games/stories. Of course, the only real pleasure it can feel is from murdering.
- The Seven Deaths of the Empress [NSFW] [TW: depictions of suicide, violence] * ongoing/unfinished
The Empress, a holy and well-loved figure, required seven deaths to complete the suicide which her husband the Emperor had ordered.

More one-offs on Tumblr.
posted by automatic cabinet (12 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
What did I read? I got confused after the third death. Androids? Guards with marble arms? Is this the Roman Empire or some copy of it in the future?
posted by Orion Blastar at 3:47 PM on January 8, 2015

Loved this tweet of his.
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:07 PM on January 8, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'm not sure what sort of Rome it is, either, but I like what I've read of it so far.
posted by tyllwin at 5:06 PM on January 8, 2015

I could not attempt to put the Seven Deaths into a genre, honestly. I think of it as Rome's inherent weirdness cranked up to 11, and okay maybe also some jetskis and automatic weapons.
posted by automatic cabinet at 6:56 PM on January 8, 2015

The Empress story feels like a traveling players scene from an unexpurgated Book Of The New Sun. I wish it were finished.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 7:30 PM on January 8, 2015 [4 favorites]

The references to androids and lictors did that for me too.
posted by I-Write-Essays at 7:35 PM on January 8, 2015

This Empress is no Livia. If they'd tried to steamroll her this way it would have been them drinking the poison.
posted by foobaz at 8:28 PM on January 8, 2015 [1 favorite]

Wait, was the end of the Empress story? The play? I'm confused.
posted by maryr at 9:13 PM on January 8, 2015

Empress is a work in progress (I hope).
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:15 PM on January 8, 2015

There would probably be more comments here if anyone knew what to say. I got through page 69 of Empress during a slow time this morning. Cabbies were stacked up behind me saying WTF?
posted by Mr. Yuck at 1:23 AM on January 9, 2015

"The Memory Stone" is pretty amazing.
posted by CCBC at 1:18 PM on January 9, 2015

The Seven Deaths of the Empress seems to be a very loose SF/steampunk flavored retelling of the forced suicide of the Empress Claudia Octavia, ordered by her husband Nero and his mistress Poppaea (who also seems to be featured in the story as "the Emperor's mistress"). (Octavia's mom was the notorious Valeria Messalina, and you have the Empress's mother Valeria's execution referred to in a flashback.)

So, in addition to the usual villas and orgies and sadistic emperors, you've got ancient, anatomically correct androids, marble prosthetics, and a gang of sea-biker pirates with guns and cigarettes right out of Waterworld (interestingly, our slave-girl protagonist also doesn't seem to have any idea what guns are). Also, the Empress rescues the Expy!Poppaea character from rape from one of the hands of the biker pirates with an axe. But Expy!Poppaea doesn't seem to be especially grateful....

Anyway, it's a very weird story but I kind of like the dream logic of it all. Let's hope it continues!
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 4:52 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]

« Older recite to us some new story... to while away the...   |   Free Community College Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments