Claire shows off her Holy WatergunPregnant nun, Holy Crap!Sister Claire
is a webcomic by Elena Barbarich (a.k.a Yamino
) and her wife, Ash.
The genre starts off comedic and full of hidden Easter Eggs
, but becomes much more dramatic and serious in the transtion to Book 2. As many of the characters are inspired by or directly based on existing ones from film and animation, Sister Claire is definitely a Shout-Out comic.
Sister Claire is a novice nun, and all she ever wanted was a purpose in life
, and a kitty would be nice, too. But when a beautiful blue businesswoman
named Gabrielle explodes out her toilet and tells her she's pregnant with the new Messiah,
this Celibate Heroine
realizes she may be in for more than she bargained for: a fantastic adventure to protect her miraculous baby (and possibly the universe.)
Sister Claire's best friend and mentor
, Sister Catharine, is unfortunately extremely allergic to cats, which is why Claire is forbidden to play with them. Unfortunately for Catharine, Claire can't seem to stay away from her best cat-friend Snowy
for long, and this brings down harsh punishment from the terrifying Sister Marguerite, who finds every excuse to torment Claire with cruel and creative punishments.
Claire initially crumbles under the guilt
of accidentally aggravating Catharine's cat allergies and from the pressure of becoming the mother of the new Messiah
. (Her pregnancy is confirmed by a flurry of strange blue babies, who turn out to be rather disposable.) The plot thickens as Sister Catharine appears to be stalked by an evil Cheshire-like cat,
who eventually possesses her
, turning her into the evil Sister Cat.
After temporarily defeating Sister Cat
with her holy Watergun, Claire begins her training in Nun Fu
. And as the story continues, it's revealed that there's more going on than Gabrielle let on and much bigger threats on the horizon coming Clarie's way. Will her newfound training see her through before the birth of her child?
The story is presented in two formats, Comic updates (every Monday) and In addition, Missing Moment
stories, illustrated prose that usually focuses on the characters pasts, updated Tues-Thurs with the occasional bonus story on Friday.
Now has a character sheet
. Please contribute.
This Web-comic provides examples of:
- Arc Words: NO ESCAPE
- All There in the Manual: The strip that reveals Sister Oscar as transgender is a bit vague, since her speech balloon saying "I'm no man." can throw readers off a bit. Your only confirmation for sure is the Word of God below the strip, which can escape your notice if you don't scroll down to see it.
- The "Missing Moments" stories go into more detail about the characters, including Oscar.
- Ambiguous Gender: Grimm, the Cheshire looking cat. Yamino has stated that Grimm doesn't have a specific gender and is mostly referred to as "they".
- Ambiguously Gay: Gabrielle makes a few subtle passes at Claire. But then again, maybe her real form isn't even female?
- Ambiguously Human: Sister Catharine, even when she's not being possessed by an evil cat.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: So hello to the Mondo Shard.
- Author Avatar: If Yamino needs a random-ass background character to throw up or otherwise humiliate themselves melodramatically, she'll usually just draw herself.
- Bait and Switch: The Queens pregnancy. While hinted to be Rosalie and Marie, they turn out to be two unrelated sons. Who sadly only live about a week.
- Because Destiny Says So
- Black Comedy: Sister Claire accidentally squishes a Bubble Boy with her bare hands, but they turn out to be "rather replaceable," in Gabrielle's words.
- Cast Full of Gay: Heterosexuals are a rare commodity in this comic.
- Cat Girl: Sister Cat A.K.A Grimm
- Cerebus Syndrome: It begins to be hinted at around here things are not as bright or silly as they appear. And then the witch trial begins...
- The Chew Toy: Poor Claire just can't catch a break.
- The Chosen One: Claire is chosen as the mother of the Messiah by Gabrielle.
- Conveniently an Orphan: Claire's true origins haven't been explained yet, but she was found on the doorstep of the abbey by Sister Catharine.
- It was later hinted that Sister Catharine might actually be Claire's mother. This also somewhat explains how Catharine had the pregnancy test.
- Now starting to look like maybe Claire is Catherine's reincarnated younger sister, though that would still make her an orphan.
- Demonic Possession Grimm (the Cheshire looking cat) to Catharine though going by the ritual and Catharine's words later on, this seems like a willing one. Grimm claims its a permanent one though they could be lying. What's more Grimm can only take over at night while Catharine regains her body during the day.
- Whatever magic Esperanza and Claire performed on Catharine seems to have ended this, as Grimm was seen in the form of a cat for the first time in a long while, and Sister Cat hasn't been seen since.
- Door Stop Baby: Sister Claire.
- Easter Egg: Yamino loves throwing in homages and references for readers to find. Some are more subtle, others are direct homages, such as the Powerpuff Girls 10th anniversary page, featuring Claire and the PPG sharing a cake.
- Empathic Healer: Sister Catharine when she was a young girl.
- Everyone Can See It: Jackson and Olga's relationship is about as well kept a secret as the ending to Citizen Cane. Everyone from the Mother Superior to Azi, who literally just met them, could tell.
- Fan Disservice: Naked Sister Marguerite, complete with disgusted reactions from the other nuns. Of course, her dialogue probably didn't help matters. Word of God says looking up references for that page was quite a harrowing experience.
- Fanservice: Here you go.
- Femme Fatalons: Sister Cat.
- Finger-Lickin' Evil: Sister Cat here and here.
- Filler: Gabrielle taking Claire to an undersea nightspot in order to relax. It's a good kind of filler, though, building character and the relationship between the two characters
- Foreshadowing: Check the third panel here and notice the placement of the antlers on the wall. Given the hints about Claire's connection to Clementine/The Horned One/The Witch Queen this is probably not an accident.
- Friend to All Living Things: Sister Claire loves all animals, but especially cats. She's a vegetarian for this reason.
- Turns out the cat thing might not be coincidence.
- Grey and Gray Morality: So far a pretty main theme of the comic. Were lead to believe witches are evil but the ones seen so far only wish to live in peace and are only hunted down out of fear for their powers. Likewise the nuns, coming off a war, are paranoid that witches are still doing evil deeds and a few seek to destroy them outright. All actions on both sides are well-intentioned but only keeps prolonging the conflict leading to more pain and hatred.
- Have You Tried Not Being a Monster?: The twins, even going so far as to have deliberate yuri symbolism all over them. But in their case, it's not forbidden love (...maybe) but forbidden psychic powers.
- Hot Springs Episode: starting here. One of many homages to anime and manga.
- Hostile Show Takeover: Happened in a guest strip that has since been lost to restructuring of the site.
- Hulking Out: Behold. The resulting Oh, Crap face is entirely justified.
- Humongous Mecha: The Annulus. Word of God states that making a pact with one was meant to represent marriage, specifically the nun’s marriage to G.O.D.
- I Have Many Names: Gabrielle.
- Impossibly Cool Clothes: The new habits the nuns are wearing in the newer chapters may qualify.
- Incredibly Lame Pun: The reason Claire is in the bathroom when she first meets Gabrielle is because Sister Marguerite gave her a severe dose of "Holy Shit Laxative".
- Jerkass: Sister Marguerite, AND FUCKING HOW.
- The artist admitted that Marguerite was based on a nun teacher she once had. She does say she knows that not all nuns are so scary.
- Kindhearted Cat Lover going nearly to Crazy Cat Lady extremes.
- Knight Templar: A few of the nuns toward withcraft. Even if said person isn't truly evil. Justified as the older nuns are still reeling from a war with witches and know that there are some still out there. Considering Claire's case, this is tragically ironic.
- Likewise works the other way with witches as the introduction with Hanabi shows.
- Little Hero, Big War
- Ms. Fanservice: Almost every character can qualify for this after their respective trip to the hot springs, though it's more Innocent Fanservice Girl instances, if anything. Straighter examples would be Gabrielle, and Sister Cat.
- Non Indicative Name: The order Claire belongs to is called the "Sisters of Mercy", so, naturally, they're actually battle nuns who train to fight evil with violence rather than, say, Incorruptible Pure Pureness.
- Noodle Incident: Claire has reputedly almost killed Catharine by accident several times, including the unexplained "watermelon incident."
- Nuns N' Rosaries
- Nuns Are Mikos: Though it's likely that this trope is just in effect for Rule of Cool, since the artist actually does know quite a bit about real nuns and has even been taught by them in real life (see Jerkass and Write Who You Know).
- Nuns Are Spooky: Well somewhat justified in a few cases as they're either or partly witches themselves.
- Nun Too Holy: Some of the more extremest nuns, most notably the Helsing branch.
- Obviously Evil: Evil Cat
- Orwellian Retcon: The artwork was redrawn in many places for the first print volume, and the online pages were replaced with the new versions. Changes include a more salamander-like design for Sal and more elaborate backgrounds for the Atlantis chapter.
- Panty Shot: A minor one on page 100, and two in a row on pages 160 and 161.
- Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: "I'm sorry to tell you that our name, Sisters of Mercy, is a bit misleading. God shows mercy. We don't."
- Rule of Three: The Trinity plays a large role in most aspects of the story.
- Secret Relationship: Between Olga and Jackso with Oscar's accidental discovery of it taking place in one of the Missing Moments, and by the time this gets revealed in the main comic it turns out to be a case of Everybody Knew Already.
- Sexy Mentor: Sister Catharine. AND Gabrielle.
- To Rose of Versailles with Sisters Rosalie, Antoinette and Oscar.
- One is done for The Last Supper, in this comic. Yamino lampshades it in her notes, commenting that the nuns all ran to Claire's side of the table, because they always wanted to pose like that.
- A good many are made to Star Wars, like this one.
- One of Claire's books is Defense Against the Dark Arts.
- The title page of Chapter 2 calls back to The Graduate.
- Anytime the nuns' students are shown, pay attention; one of them might be Yamino, and the rest are invariably cameo appearances by characters from shows Yamino is particularly into, like Panty and Stocking, or human versions of ponies.
- Also, Azula, Mai, and Ty Lee have made an appearance as students. On the same page, you can also see Ema Skye and Maya Fey.
- Apparently The Count sleeps in the catacombs
- Also, Claire is on a Mission from God!
- Sokka's club, as well as one of Batman's bat-shurikens can be seen here.
- Osaka and Chiyo-chan are seen in the front row on this page.
- The sequence in the above link gives off a feel like The Crucible.
- One of the new banner ads features a kitten dressed up like Nepeta, with the phrase "Got Kitten!" (a reference to the "Got Tiger" meme).
- PokéBalls can be seen in this strip.
- Chuck from Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt can be found here. It's not all that surprising a shout out to that would appear here, really.
- Several popular cats can be seen on the roof here.
- Claire's trip to Atlantis in Chapter 5 is filled with dozens of familiar faces, if you look carefully enough.
- In the Missing Moments story "La Visita", Claire and the twins read from a book titled Rise of the Brave Tangled Frozen Dragons.
- Sink-or-Swim Mentor: Catharine claims Sister Marguerite is one, but it's becoming increasingly apparent that she just really misses her job as a witch hunter, and Claire's mistakes are just convenient excuses to vent her pent-up sadism.
- Sssssnake Talk: Subverted by the eel bouncer at Atlantis. He has a lisp.
- Strange Syntax Speaker: Talk like Yoda, Mother Superior does.
- Strictly Formula: Jerky character seems evil. Jerky character has sympathetic/tragic backstory. Jerky character is now good. Repeat ad-naseum.
- Supernatural Gold Eyes: Grimm, and Catharine while possessed.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: "There's nothing suspicious or weird happening!"
- Tears of Blood: Claire passes a statue weeping red tears here, signaling that events are about to take a turn for the worse...
- Took a Level in Badass: Claire. Just look at her first encounter with Grimm, versus her second.
- Torture Technician: Sister Marguerite, apparently.
When it comes to pain, I'm a professional. And I love my job.
- Valley Girl: Sister Marie talks like one.
- Vomit Indiscretion Shot: After immaculately conceiving the Messiah, Claire is sick.
- As is Yamino, when she sees an opportunity to use theatrics to save the world from Sister Marguerite.
- Virgin Power
- Wacky Cravings: Om nom wooden mugs nom nom.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Most of the nuns such as Olga and Marguerite and, according to Catharine, Grimm.
- Wham Line:
Wolf Witches Queen: We can't ignore the signs that a war is brewing again. We could use powerful allies. Lupo, track these witches. Protect them.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: And again, Sister Claire.
- Zettai Ryouiki: Grade C on Sister Claire in Book 1.