Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped:
- The two main anvils of both parts of Spring Heeled (chapters 27 and 28) is that you shouldn't take all the problems for yourself, and that you shouldn't distrust adults just because one of them did something bad to you. Annie spends the entirety of both episodes dealing with Jack's possession by the etheric spider, without telling anyone about the fact. Once Jack activates the Power Station, traps Reynardine with a device built by the Donlans and escapes, Jones makes her appearance. Once they're all back in the Court, she lets Annie deal with Jack's situation, only for Jones to give Annie a lesson based on this anvil, after all is said and done:
Jones: If you knew about Jack's condition, you should have told someone about it. I don't want you to lose your initiative, Antimony, but you should know that you don't have to deal with everything by yourself.
- Also, near the end of Chapter 28: Spring Heeled: part II, there's this bonus anvil about labeling others based on ignorance, fear and misunderstanding.
Jones: Zimmy keeps people at arm's length because she knows she is a danger to those around her. She can hardly be blamed for what she is.
Reynardine: A demon is what she is.
Jones: A label commonly applied to what is feared and misunderstood. Don't forget that you are known as "the demon Renard" to many people.
- Chapter 29: A Bad Start. Kat (still affected by the events of Chapter 25: Sky Watcher And The Angel) rescues a pigeon. She then brings it to Paz, where she and another Robot do some tests on him. Later, they enter into a room with many cells holding abandoned mice, and Kat breaks herself in tears. Cue this anvil dropped in dialogue form over pages 753 and 754:
Kat: Paz, how can you work in a place like this!? Knowing what they do!
Paz: They are not all used for testing! And many of the tests are non-invasive! They study behaviour and learning patterns...
Kat: This doesn't make it better! This place... the whole Court... they just do what's best for themselves. They don't care what happens to anyone else.
Paz: Kat, I know is not perfect. I wish for a day we didn't need to keep these mice... but until then, I try to make life comfortable for them. And there are very strict rules and limitations. Is all very tightly self-regulated.
Kat: Self-regulated?! That just means they can do what they want!
Paz: No! You see, to do that, they would have to get through me first. The Court isn't a big monster that does as it pleases. Es a collection of people, working to do what they think is right. And, over time, other people see what is wrong, what mistakes were made, and work hard to fix them. I cry too when I find this place. But I ask to help. To change and make things better.
Kat: What's the use!? The entire process is flawed. You can't just make it better.
Paz: ¿Y el pichón? That tiny, little, ugly thing? Why did you bring it here? You could have left it to die. Maybe even kill it yourself to get rid of the problem. Is just a pigeon. Nobody would know, or care.
Kat: Whaaa?! I-I could never do that!
Paz: Thas right! And with your help, and bobby and me, he will grow up to be beautiful.
- At the end of Chapter 30: The Coward Heart, Parley learnt two lessons: don't be shy to admit your own feelings to the ones you love, and acting in a rude way achieves nothing.
- Chapter 38:
Zimmy: You can't always run from what scares ya.
- A major character enters a same-gender relationship and much of chapter 45 is devoted to a pep talk about embracing her orientation when her friend appears to react poorly to the news. Some queer fans didn't like that her sexuality was being treated as an Issue in a fantastical world where love between a robot and a shadow is handled casually, and would have preferred for such a relationship to be treated as normal and unremarkable; but others liked that the comic addressed concerns that the character would almost certainly have in real life and appreciated the message sent to Gunnerkrigg's young adult fanbase.