Questions abound for Melbourne fans after the Demons slumped to a 46-point loss to Richmond on the big stage of their Anzac Day eve clash at the MCG.
Chief executive Peter Jackson said the team trashed the club's brand in a 67-point loss to Hawthorn last week and coach Simon Goodwin conceded the erratic Demons can't be trusted on the evidence of their first four games.
Just exactly what Melbourne's brand is, after they slumped to a 2-3 record with a 15.12 (102) to 8.8 (56) defeat in front of 77,071 fans, needs further clarification.
The Demons were good in patches, but they wilted in the face of the Tigers' pressure in the second quarter and offered little resistance late, conceding seven of the last nine goals.
But after kicking one goal in the last three quarters of the loss to the Hawks, Goodwin still felt there was enough in Tuesday evening's heavy defeat to suggest progress.
"The effort and the intensity and the way we wanted to play was better, but it's got to be sustained for a longer period of time," Goodwin said.
"It was a step forward from last week - (that) didn't resemble anything of the way we want to play - but this week was a step forward for three quarters.
"I thought the effort and intensity was strong all night until the last quarter.
"But there's clearly some things we've got to work on."
One of those areas Goodwin spoke of is the connection between his midfield and attack.
The energetic Demons had the reigning premiers on the back foot early only to be wasteful going inside attacking 50.
Then, in a continuation of a worrying trend, Goodwin's men lost their way in the second quarter, the Tigers winning the inside 50 count 19-5.
"We hung in there ... I think that's what the game sometimes needs you to do," Goodwin said.
"I thought our defenders were really good for that quarter.
"The second quarter wasn't our best footy, but sometimes you're not going to play your best footy and you've got to hang in their and that's what we did.
"I can't fault the boys ... I thought Richmond were very good for the whole game."
The Demons suffered a blow when Dean Kent's night ended with a hamstring injury in the dying seconds of the second quarter.
Clayton Oliver (31 possessions), Nathan Jones (30), Jake Melksham (four goals) and Max Gawn (56 hitouts) were key contributors for Melbourne.