Talk not to me of blasphemy, man; I'd strike the sun if it insulted me.
hello @whaleweekly and whale weekly fans!! welcome to moby dick!!!! i hope y’all enjoyed the first chapter of ishmael going “fuck im depressed im gonna go walk into the ocean”
for the past couple of years i’ve been working on a webcomic adaptation of moby dick. it looks a little something like this:
moby dick: or, the webcomic is a qtpoc-written (that’s me) adaptation of moby dick, trying to remain faithful to the spirit of the original story while also engaging with melville’s (always very conscious, sometimes excellent, sometimes poor) treatment of race & racism. it’s also very queer (like, of course, the OG book!). i have been working on this project for a couple of years now and it is my pride and joy; i’ve poured a lot of love into her. & id really love for y’all to come along and love this story as much as i do, through the lovely project over at whale weekly or through the comic.
i’ve got a good amount of backlog up, so if you want to read along the webcomic too as whale weekly continues to update, please come check it out! link is in my bio; updates with a new page every friday! (currently on a holiday break). you can find her at mobydick-thecomic.com
and just for fun, here’s some more snippets of what she looks like
thank you for reading! rb’s are always appreciated 💖
love is auguring a lil hole for your captain’s peg leg so he doesn’t fall over in a strong gust of wind
Ahab alone is enough to die.
[ID: A digital illustration for Moby Dick, based on the Twelfth Night Anne Hathaway photoshoot. Captain Ahab stands in the center, looking horrified as Starbuck, Fedallah, and Pip all grasp at him from different angles. All characters are tangled in a bright red harpoon line, except for Ahab, who is unharmed. Starbuck’s right hand holds the end of the harpoon line, with a heavy, sharp dart on the end, and the cord wraps around his hand and then throat as he leans in to kiss Ahab with a hand under his chin. Ahab’s eyes and mouth are open, as if he has been caught off guard, and he stares at Starbuck with a devastated concern. A bright red crown sits atop Ahab’s head and bleeds onto his face and collar. A drop of blood rests on Starbuck’s chin. The harpoon line passes in front of Ahab’s chest, and is grabbed by Fedallah, who holds the cord close to his chest, and buries his face in Ahab’s shoulder with an anguished expression. The line is tangled around Fedallah the most; wrapping twice around his neck and tangled all over his chest. With his free hand, Fedallah grasps onto Ahab’s waist. The line finally wraps around Pip, who is clinging to Ahab’s sleeve, and pulling at the line in front of Ahab’s chest. Pip’s mouth is open as if he is calling out, and the harpoon line circles around his shoulders, and finally hangs from his arm. Behind all of the characters looms the massive shape of the whale, Moby-Dick. Moby-Dick’s skin is wrinkled and scarred, and one massive eye stares down at the scene before him.
The next three images are all closeups of the drawing.
Character designs: Ahab is a large Arab man with short, curly, dark, greying hair, a pointed beard, and scars across the bridge of his nose, and over his lip. He wears a long, maroon coat with gold buttons. Starbuck is a thin white man with short red hair, a short mustache, and many freckles. He wears a dark waistcoat over a white shirt. Fedallah is a thin Persian man with a mustache and short beard. He wears a white turban and a dark long shirt. Pip is a teenaged Black boy with short curly hair, and he wears a light colored shirt. End ID.]
the ID for this is long enough already, so I’ll keep this brief, but hi I have spent weeks on this piece and it genuinely feels like a magnum opus or something. this is possibly my favorite thing I’ve drawn all year. designs as always from the delightful @pocketsizedquasar ‘s Moby Dick comic!
anyways I am constantly anguishing about the fact that Ahab thinks of himself as the lone sacrifice in his doomed journey, the one “enough to die”, but in reality, everyone who loves him, who tries to save him, faces his punishment first. Ahab ISN’T alone, despite what he thinks, and that connection directly gets the three closest people in his life killed. how am i ever supposed to recover from that.
genuinely very tragic and upsetting that for like 200 years Ahab has been talked about as the mad wild captain when in reality, yes, his violence dooms the narrative, but at the core of his character, he is just a deeply lonely, deeply hurt, disabled and traumatized man who is trying to make sense of his pain in a world that would rather leave him bleeding in the streets :(
being forced back out to a rigorous, deadly job after being freshly impaled on your own mobility aid would make anyone insane, I think.
captain ahab is one of the characters of all time.
he’s full of hubris. he’s an amputee. he said he’d punch the sun. he once was in a coma for three days straight. he was prophecized to lose his leg and in response decided to make his own prophecy that he would kill the thing that did it. he would fight god. he’s in love with his first mate who he also threatened at gunpoint. he used the same gun as a cane. he tells his second mate to go fuck himself. he was sent back out to sea immediately after losing his leg without the chance to heal. he chooses to go on whalehunts instead of staying on the ship despite having no reason to as the captain, something that is doubly dangerous for him on account of the whole leg thing. he once was in a deadly swordfight with a spaniard. his method of encouraging his oarsmen is to swear at them profusely, which was censored by ishmael for the good christian audience. he spent one (1) night with his wife after marrying her and then immediately fucked back off to sea. he’s an orphan, and this is the least tragic thing about him. he’s named after an evil biblical king. his best friend is a persian stowaway who tells him how he’s going to die. he hears he’s going to die by rope and immediately assumes it’ll be the gallows, ignoring the fact that he’s on a ship full of ropes, and also being surprisingly chill with the concept of himself being sentenced to capital punishment. like yeah, that sounds like something i’d do. having gay sex with his first mate WOULD fix him AND the entire plot of the story. he adopts the cabin boy for funsies. allowing himself human connection with the cabin boy WOULD fix him and the story, and he acknowledges this out loud while actively avoiding it. he worships fire. he was even gay.
shipmates is it gay for you to keep your magnet to your first mate's brain? for his body and will to be yours?