Apartment 3-G, 9/12/04
This gets my vote for one of the creepiest installments in the comics since I started doing this blog. There’s something deeply weird about Lu Ann’s need to atone for her ancestors’ slave-owning ways by closing herself into this Underground Railway hiding place. Since she went through a bout of agoraphobia last year, when she didn’t leave her apartment for weeks, we know she likes enclosed spaces, so maybe her desire to learn in this way is a little self-serving. It’d almost be kind of kinky, if Lu Ann weren’t such a sexless goody-goody. The weird way she’s colored in this strip, with her lips the same color as the rest of her face, make her look almost corpse-like — just adding to the creepiness of entombing her.
In subsequent installments, we learn that Lu Ann’s harrowing, life-changing experience in that dark chamber has led her to boldly confront her past by researching slavery on the Internet. Maybe someday soon she’ll meet an actual black person!