Critic Watch

Have you seen Mel N. Colley? If so, please file your report here. We will personally (through a series of middle-men, bribed guards, and gossip) attempt to verify your info. If we find it is valid, we will update the blotter with it.



    After more than a year without leads on the whereabouts of our beloved critic, we received a tip from Witch Hayzelle, hailing from… well, she didn’t say… I mean, really, Witch? That’s kind of important information… in any case, this is what she had to say: “I have heard rumor that your critic Mel may have taken a job as a librarian, and as we all know that has the potential to lead to unspeakable horrors, which is why you should always talk in hushed tones when surrounded by such vast quantities of books lest the Great Old Ones take notice.  But I have also heard tell that Mel ran off to the woods to join the Bigfoot and that Mel was actually always one of them, albeit a bit less hairy and notably more verbose perhaps, and this is why they were so often seen running naked in these environs.  Let us hope it is the latter.” Yes, that is indeed helpful information, Witch, but again, we don’t know what region you are contacting from? Heck, it might not even be Earth, for all we know! (Don’t judge us, stranger things have happened.) So, for all you searchers out there, be sure to check your local library or family of sasquatches to see if you can find any sign of Mel!


    Billy Smith from Plain City, UT sent us a message stating they saw our missing critic at the abandoned elementary school the previous week. “They had long blonde hair and was dressed in a black peacoat. That was all I could tell because I only saw them in the corner of my eye as I chased them through the halls. Because of the clutter and debris, I lost track of Mel, but since then, I will occasionally see them at night just at the edge of my peripheral vision. Could you come and get them, please? They are really starting to freak me out.” Thanks for your tip Billy, we had somebody check it out, but that individual has no face, and the last we checked Mr. Colley had two eyes, a nose, and a mouth. Best of luck, and we hope you enjoy having a new friend!


    A tip from User386 reported that “i read ur last book its obvious y mel is avoiding u at all costs because it sucked & i wold hate 2 have 2 keep readin all of them why do you hVE TO DO THIS?” Well, User286, that is certainly an excellent piece of advice. We will be sure to check for Mel at—let me check the IP— 69 Trent Hill Road, Onionweld, MI. Expect us soon, User386. Expect us soon.


    Zach H. wrote, “Last I saw him, he was dead, but otherwise doing ok. Also he was in Savannah, GA and very much alive.” After our mouths opened and closed several times in astonishment, we all only had one thing to say: “This is unbelievable! They didn’t even provide a description?!”


    An anonymous tipper from the Burlington region of Vermont, USA has provided us with a clear image of Mel, so be sure to focus your search in that area for now!


    Mel has been briefly recovered, but is lost once again. They were wearing an all-black suit (as would be expected at a funeral), their hair was also black. So were their eyes. In an unblinking stare, Mel said to Macy Blush, “You have a new story coming out tomorrow. Hasn’t the world suffered enough?” When Macy attempted to give Mel a copy of the Many Mini Misadventures anthology, the critic let out a high-pitched scream like a hawk and dashed into the forest. Despite our pursuit of Mel, it appears they have been re-lost. Unfortunately, we can’t inform you of the location of this sighting as Macy prefers her privacy and would rather avoid the paparazzi. Let’s just say that it happened in the Northern Hemisphere.


    Carl Wittenberg wrote, “I haven’t seen them.” Not helpful, Carl.


    We received a parchment from Günter, that reads, “Why my good gentlemen and gentleladies, I daresay I have spotted the critic in Scotland near Craigh na Dun. I tracked them to a cloister of stones on a small hill where I completely lost the trail, however. I returned to Inverness to pick up the tracks again but they seem lost to time.” This piece of information is critical to know because we, too, could find no tracks left by Mel. This is excellent progress! Everybody is on the same page. Thank you, Günter, for this invaluable clue!


    We are pleased to announce that we have discovered Mel! Did you read that, Mel’s family? We are sure you are delighted by the news! Of course, as it turns out, the critic was never lost to begin with. Hell, they don’t exist! This entire search was all one ill-advised shitpost in an attempt to prompt a giggle or two. Did you notice how many contradictions are in this blotter entry? If you did, congratulations—we couldn’t pull a quick one over you! This was an April Fool’s joke. Mel N. Colley is still lost and in need of searching. To the family of Mel—we got you good, didn’t we?


    A brief message from Mateo Garcia, simply stating “yo momma,” has turned out to be a dead end. We have spoken to Mr. Xiao Yo and, unfortunately, his mother passed away a little less than a decade ago. Whatever knowledge she had on the whereabouts of our lost critic has been taken to the grave with Ju Yo.


    It seems that Christine Wayworth (who tipped us on 8 March 2022) has had a mental breakdown and is currently incarcerated at a local asylum with a glazed look on her face and repeatedly whispering the phrases, “They’re here,” and “I see dead people.” Seeing as she’s no longer of any use to us, we searched every well in Seattle without success. Mel is still missing.


    We received a note saying Mel was seen at a train station in Bangor, Maine wearing their normal critic attire. Because Christine Wayworth informed us of her discovery of Mel in the well, this has been determined to be a false alarm and is being disregarded.


    Christine Wayworth tipped us about seeing Mel at the bottom of the well in her hometown of Seattle, Washington. They had long, dark hair, wearing a soaking wet night gown (Presumably due to being in a well. Perhaps because they were scared) and held a red balloon in one hand and a banjo that eerily played itself to an upbeat rhythm in the other. When Christine called down, asking if Mel needed help, they only responded, “Seven days!” She intends to return in a week to help them out, as requested.


    We discovered a letter written in 1861 by the historical figure James Buchanan (1791-1868) that says something about a tall, gangly individual with scruff facial hair hidden by a top hat. It goes on to talk about a particular white house… Honestly, we’re not too sure—his handwriting was sloppy AF, but we presume he was speaking of Mel. Unfortunately, we could not determine which white house Mr. Buchanan was referring to, so we cannot make an official search. Just keep that in mind for future reference.


    An anonymous tip reported a sighting of Mel in Albuquerque. They had long, blonde hair, green eyes, a pale complexion, and wore a blue sheet toga. They were said to be dangling from the lowest limb of a California redwood tree. Seeing as Albuquerque is in New Mexico, we thought such a landmark would be easy to spot but it has been deceptively difficult. Called off the search after nine minutes.