Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: Which is not to discount the oscilliscope in the last panel's background, if I'm not mistaken. Wavely lines, what might be control knobs or a tape backup... good stuff.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Ah, Helen. So manipulative...
Leon Arnott (l) says: Monday:
That first line of Artie's sounds almost like a quote from one of your nation's creation myths.
This is, to my memory, the most penitent Artie ever gets, which doesn't speak well of him given that his most troublesome deeds are still before him. (Though, of course, the sheer scale of them means that they exceed the traditional scope of blame and fault.)
Elaine Corvidae (elaine_corvidae) says: @Leon, I think the difference is that Artie's future sins were committed from genuine good will, whereas this mainly came from boredom, not some real altruistic desire to make Dave "pretty." Artie only apologizes when he wasn't trying to do the right thing, and knows it.
Jon W. (kd7sov) says: I find it interesting that Artie is concerned about wrecking havoc - that is, making it of less effect - by using the ray.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says: Big Freakin' (tm) Gun count: 27
Christopher Heiny (clheiny) says: Kevlar is better. I laughed my ass off the first time I read this strip, and Helen's lines have stuck in my head ever since. I doubt asbestos would have had that effect or have been as memorable.
James Rice (jhrice) says:
When this strip came out originally, I E-mailed Shaenon that Nomex was what you wanted for fire-proof pants. She pointed out that Kevlar was also fire-proof. This lead to a long discussion that ended much later with the strip where Artie talks about moving toothpicks. I'll leave it to you to figure out the connection.
Daniel Barkalow (iabervon) says:
This is one of those strips that makes sense until you think about it. If Dave were any hotter, and she were wearing heat-retardant pants, wouldn't she roast her torso? Surely some sort of lower-body heat sink, like a metal tiki skirt, would be more useful in that situation. Kevlar pants only make sense if she sits on him (in which case, he'd have to be even more oblivious than he seems to be).
On the other hand, needing to wear Kevlar pants is an obvious figure of speech if you're actually wearing Kevlar pants.
Asbestos pants are something entirely different. They're what she'd need if she had to tell Dave she didn't like Star Wars.
Rachel S. (masamage) says:
I agree that Kevlar is best.
And this is one of my favorite lines in all of Narbonic.
Joyce Melton (halfelven) says: Shaenon! Kevlar starts with a K, of course it's funnier. But I know dear, you're doing asbestos you can.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: So does that make them hot pants? ;)
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: Kevlar is sexier. And it reminds me of the lecture in The Sunshine Boys about words with 'K' in them are funny - "pickle" is funny - if it doesn't have a 'K' in it, it isn't funny.
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:
@Daniel: This is one of those strips that makes sense until you think about it. That;'s why I try not to think about things, it just makes life complicated.
Besides, asbestos pants provide no protection against ur-gerbils.
So, she has admitted to Artie that she has the hot pants for Dave. I summon the unseen forces of Character Development and Foreshadowing!!!
Joanna Pfaff (theorygirl) says: Not sure whether asbestos is really a funnier word, but "kevlar pants" flows better than "asbestos pants," in my opinion.
K C (spotweld) says: It is the fondest hope for all nerd boy to be deemed "kevlar worthy" by some geek grrl...
Andy Finkel (andyf) says:
"The NIHF museum is currently closed for construction as they add a new science, math, and technology middle school to the complex. The museum is expected to re-open in mid-2010."
Brand Willis (brandyllyn) says: I think asbestos pants wold have distracted me with concern for Helen's long-term health. No, I don't know why I'm worried about the pants but not any of the myriad of other dangerous things she does.
Matt Katinas (nidoking) says: Asbestos worked just fine in Hot Shots Part Deux...
Kevin Peckham (detailbear) says: @ Daniel: I think the intimation is that Dave's attractiveness is causing an endothermic reaction in Helen's lower torso. If he wer e any hotter, then Helen might start charing the chairs.
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: I agree with Brand- asbestos would have left us with a feeling of "uh-oh, asbestos is dangerous!" rather than "heh, I guess Kevlar is heat-proof. Yeah, I knew that."
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Ohhh dear...
Leon Arnott (l) says: Wednesday:
Artie, please don't sit on Dave's nose when he's lying down and staring straight ahead. Thanks.
Speaking of voiceprints - surely, in spite of a changed skull and vocal chords, Dave still retains his original accent, thus lacking the cultured cadence of a worldly evil professor? ...Well, I'm sure he'll have no choice but to work on it.
David Harmon (mental_mouse) says:
Artie, please don't sit on Dave's nose... <ACHOO!>
Never mind... but while you're up there, can you change that light bulb?
Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: http://comics.com/big_nate/2009-06-10/ - Looks like some survived!
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:
(TUNE: "Coming To America", Neil Diamond)
Wow! Look at what we did now!
Weird! This is totally weird!
Got his voice and fingerprints,
See! Now I'm like Helen's enemy!
Say ... how'd I get like this anyway?
John Campbell (jcampbel) says: I'm impressed by how much Dave doesn't look like Madblood in that body.
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: Primarily it's Shaenon's ability to draw body language. Dave is moving in ways Madblood never would.
also dave isn't wearing a labcoat.
Alexander Danner (danner) says: Hah! I can see what Andrew means about the resemblance to Dirk!
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: Dirk's ears are smaller :-)
Miikka Ryökäs (kizor) says:
It's so perfect, I only just realized that you might not know that "Tiede" is Finnish for "Science." Not in any weird clause or phrasing, either, but a perfectly ordinary word that's not normally used as a name.
The association manages to make both this strip and the man even BETTER, but he might want to look into DNA testing because as warning signs go, this is right up there with Remus Lupin or Frank Einstein or, one speculates, Zeta Iamnotagerbil Vincent.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Ooooooops. He and his big mouth...
Leon Arnott (l) says: Thursday:
I find it hard to believe that Helen hadn't already thought of this three weeks of episodes ago, but now that I think about it, love and rivalry probably meant that she was distracted from such conclusions. And there's really a wide number of ways to invade Madblood's moonbase that she could have also been contemplating.
You talk about Dave as if there was ever a point where he completely deserved some Helen-induced injustice.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:
Minor spoiler follows:
Leon, it's no use trying to determine if Helen had this planned all along, or if she just does the first thing that pops into her head. As Helen herself points out near the end of this story arc, "when you're mad, those are the same thing."
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says: It isn't going to happen, but it would be interesting if, at the end of it all, Madblood was transmogrified by accident into Dave and had to be Helen's computer geek and permanent lab subject forever.
Marvelous Patric (themarvelouspatric) says: i've often thought that madblood WAS dirk. in fact, i usually just call dirk Lupin. But that's between me and him. And emily.
Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:
Dirk's wife Emily is a scientist. It'd be perfect if her last name meant "Cartoonist," but I guess it probably doesn't.
Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says: In the Narboniverse, it can.
Sor Cyress (sorcyress) says:
Bahahahah!! He *does!!* Ohman, I am totally going to break into giggles the next time I see Dirk now.
I don't know Emily's last name off the top of my head, but there's a potential that it's Tiede, since they're married and stuff. Making her "Emily Science - Scientist" which is kinda wonderful.
...I kinda want to draw cartoons about Emily Science. Do you think Emily would be upset at me?
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says:
I hope not, Sor. Emily Science! is a great name.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: I like Helen's look in the last panel.
Leon Arnott (l) says: Friday:
Woof woof draw wider panels woof.
Mell has a bit of a one-track mind, don't you think? But it occurs to me that she would actually be weirder if her shooting fixation was replacing with something more wholesome, such as playing magnetic scrabble or stealing teeth. There'd be whole swathes of Narbonic storylines where Mell struggles amidst robot hordes to find an official dictionary or quabble about upside-down Ws, or trick a Dave Patrol officer into opening his mouth within proximity of her omnipresent dental pliers. Really, the shooting thing makes some sense as a fixation and a meaningful contribution.
Leon Arnott (l) says:
"Wouldn't it be more effective to make Mell look like Madblood?"
--James Rice, 10 Jan 2003
"1. One might question the wisdom of sending Mell, unsupervised, to an evil fortress bristling with high-tech weaponry of every description.
2. This stuff *never* happens to Mell.
3. Heh heh heh."
--Shaenon K. Garrity, 10 Jan 2003
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says: With Mell, it's not so much a fatal flaw as a lethal one.
ribbles (ribbles) says: I literally think about Mell's quote in this strip at least once a week. This strip is the reason I started using the word "Viz."
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:
(TUNE: "Saturday In The Park", Chicago)
Normal day ... here at work ...
Try to protest,
Christopher Heiny (clheiny) says: Mell's look in the third panel is priceless. Basking in the recognition of her peers.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Heh. Heh. Heh.
Leon Arnott (l) says: Saturday:
Dave may have solved the perceived problem of his staggering looks, but the problem of his workload will have to wait another day. There's a moon picnic to plan!
I'm not sure if Helen's thought balloon is entirely necessary - it seemingly draws the limelight away from the punchline in Dave's exasperated self-realisation. Though, it seems equally apparant that Dave's line would seem a bit paltry standing alone in panel 4, and needs some reaction from Helen so that it doesn't appear too outwardly-directed.
ribbles (ribbles) says: Helen's thought balloon is important for furthering the explication of geekiness in the world (i.e., it's a great line.)
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:
(TUNE: "Piano Man", Billy Joel)
It's a typical day in Narbonic Labs;
He says, "Helen, is this yet another plan
(oh nerd nerd nerd, nerdy nerd ...)
Fly to the Moon, you're a science geek!
Chris Brunner (cjbrunner) says: Perhaps the light and puffy hair is a side effect of being recently transmogrified back to Dave form?
Dov Mittelman (silentspeaker) says:
Now Artie had been left alone one night
In the lab-o-ra-tory with Mell
And he proffers that “fatal” is quite understatal
And Helen can only say, “Well…
“In that case, you’d better go out with them
And fire a bunch of grenades.”
Now Mell is ecstatic (though that’s automatic)
And Artie’s relief is displayed.
Brandon Gorley (bowtothebard) says: Anyone else loving Helen's expression in the last panel of strip 6? Dr. Narbon would be so proud. Log In or Register to post a comment! It's free!
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