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The main reason I decided to make Helen travel through time was so I could draw more of Li'l Helen. That's a pretty good ray gun, too.

Obviously, the best part of this strip is the word "payforward." The funny thing is, Helen's mom would totally understand.

Helen has adopted the opposite of Dave's approach to dealing with the time travel thing.

Helen looks a lot like an Andre Richard drawing in the last panel. Dave's disgusted expression is pretty good.

This is one of those strips where Helen just says what I'm thinking.

Not for the first or last time, Dave's irrational fondness for Helen is his undoing.

Another reason I had Helen get unstuck in time was so I could get her involved in the action. She sat out most of "Doppelganger Gambit," and I wanted her doing more stuff. Then I gave her a big ray gun, because that's what "doing more stuff" means to me.

I wrote this one so early on that I wasn't even sure whether Helen would be capable of monitoring Dave as she describes here. Eventually I decided it was better if she was just logically extrapolating what he would be likely to do in his own past.

What would Helen do in her past? Try to destroy her mother, most likely. It wouldn't work.

Helen tends to get irritable when Dave shows an interest in other women. I really like how expressive the kid versions of the characters are.

28 comments:
Justin Grubbs (jjgrubbs) says:

Man, for the longest time I pronounced it "Doos ex masheena" all because Narbonic introduced me to the phrase before I heard anyone say it.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Official Big Freakin' (tm) Gun count: 35

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: *ding!*
Leon Arnott (l) says: Monday:

At last, another voyager to this strange world of the past, this Land of Used-To-Be.

Helen should be very glad that she chose this time to venture into. Any of the other times would surely have her reliving (or preliving) somewhat bad situations for her.
Kendal Reed (auditors) says:

Why is Dave so convinced that he's getting out of this? If I recall correctly, his previous "first" encounter with Helen Alpha left him dead...

Oh, that's right. He's convinced because it sets up the punchline. I always forget about the Rule of Funny.

Lenore Hoyt (landsnark) says:

Is that the gerbil inseminator?

Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says:

"The main reason I decided to make Helen travel through time was so I could draw more of Li'l Helen."

Don't you mean Li'l Hell...en? (Or L'il Hellion. Considering her behavior throughout the strip, I'm surprised that you never gave her child-self either of these appellations.)

Joel Brackenbury (mockferret) says:

His first encounter with Helen A may have killed him - but he still got out of it...

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Hey, Porter", Johnny Cash)

Payforward!  Payforward!  It's justice in advance!
I better do this right, 'cause I won't get a second chance!
This kid's my future henchman, his butt I gotta save!
Consider this payforward, Mom, for future-killing Dave!

Carl Fishman (carlfishman) says:

Wheras I can't help but notice how very cute Young Helen is.  (In, of course, an entirely innocent and non-sexual way!)  I think it's the pigtails and glasses that do it.

Norman Thallheimer (norman) says:

Cute and non-sexual I'll stipulate.  But innocent?!?  It does not seem at all likely.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Awwww. And yes, Helen looks falsely innocent.
Kendal Reed (auditors) says:

She looks innocent as long as you can't see her Big Freakin' Gun.

Therefore, in this strip, yes.

Leon Arnott (l) says: Wednesday:

This is definitely putting something of a strain on Dave's professional employer-employee relationship.
Pete Bleackley (petethemadscientist) says:

Is this the first time that Helen admits finding Dave attractive to his face?

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "You Are So Beautiful", Joe Cocker)

You're such a cutie-pie!
Yes, we ... all agree!
I know you're only six years old,
But I can't help but see ...
You're such a cutie-pie!
I squeeeeeeeeeee!

Maricruz Villalobos-Zamora (maki_p) says:

Well, Helen's a pretty cute kid too

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Awwwww.
Leon Arnott (l) says: Thursday:

Helen has no problem with asking Dave to divest himself of all the security, reliance and authority he has for her. Evil people disregard trust - it is more efficient to just know that someone will or will not do something.

Today I find it a little bit interesting that your handlettering develops serifs whenever you write in boldface.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "I Will Always Love You", Dolly Parton)

Confided ... in your Mum ...
I know now ... that was dumb!
It's habit, I admit ...
Dagnabbit, I can't quit!
But I-I-I should never trust you!
Oh, I ... should never trust you!

Leon Arnott (l) says: Friday:

Doesn't her poor mother get destroyed enough times in her life?

Dave doesn't really need to act apologetic about making selfish use of this temporal mistake, especially to her of all people. Maybe this is just childish deference to people taller than you.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

I would have done the same.  Exactly the same.  Why am I not a Dave?

Yeah, I would have pursued all the girls I had crushes on, but never had the nerve to talk to before ... and I would have totally gotten my scrawny ass kicked.  Most likely by the girls themselves.

Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

Doesn't her poor mother get destroyed enough times in her life?  It's self-inflicted.  All that boxed wine...

James Rice (jhrice) says:

I would have tried to buy and then hide a few shares of Microsoft stock.

Justin Grubbs (jjgrubbs) says:

But if he didn't need to impress teenage girls he would never have given himself the chance. I cry paradox! Not that it really matters given the Narboniverse's view on time travel.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Heh.
Leon Arnott (l) says: Saturday:

Pfft, "adult mind". It's a saving grace for Dave's dignity that Helen didn't witness how that actually went down.
Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

So we're starting a 'Dave never impressed teenage girls' meme?

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The education bestowed on Shaenon K. Garrity by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged. ... full profile