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Smithson Thus Far... ·


It's kind of weird that the lab has separate ladies' and men's rooms, what with there being only three human staff members, but Helen tends to be scrupulous about that kind of thing.

I hope you find this joke funny, because I'm just going to keep repeating it until I run out of dudes.

Yes, this goes on for a while.

Argh, I love Seth. I have an inordinate fondness for little angry nerd guys. Over on Skin Horse, Nick is my favorite character by an embarrassingly wide margin. (Jeff's favorite character is Sweetheart, but he loves animals who sometimes wear funny hats the way I love angry nerds.)

Speaking of Skin Horse, some readers of that strip have suggested that nerdgirl Marcie is Seth's sister. This seems entirely possible. They've both got the curly red hair and freckles going on.

Man, that's a short dress on Mell.

Aw, poor Seth. He's not inured to this stuff like Dave and Artie are. It's okay; he'll get used to it.

The little illegible equations written on the bathroom stall are cute. I guess sometimes Helen is just seized by inspiration.

Less than an hour after this strip first went live, I had sold the original art.

Here Seth turns out to have a useful function in the storyline: explaining nerd references that Dave is too embarrassed to explain. It was Andrew's idea to dress Helen as Emma Frost. Andrew is full of good ideas.

And, yes, by, "It was this or nothing!" the demon does in fact mean that outfit or nothing. Dave is also full of good ideas.

Sam Ashley (evilmidnightlurker) says:

Is there a tiny little door with the universal symbol for "male superintelligent gerbil bathroom?" :)

Leon Arnott (l) says: Monday:

The funniest part is that Artie is, in fact, a minister.

(Actually, the real funniest part is the use of space in panel 4 as juxtaposed with 2 and 3.)
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Heh.
Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

Dammit, I can never use Mell's witty last line, unless I want some really odd looks ...

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Anything Goes", Cole Porter)

When fiends appear
To spoil the party,
We need volunteers;
It's Artie,
Not Mell, who goes ...
She's wearing hose!

It seems this night
We need a minister
Willing to fight
The sinister
Force that grows ...
(Mell's wearing hose!)

Now, when things appear,
Leather wings appear,
Fire stings severe,
And it brings a tear!
Artie told you guys,
"Hey, that's cold, you guys,"
Which Helen surely knows!

So hordes of Hell
He must resist,
But not Mell
Who cannot assist
'Cause she's in nice clothes ...
She's wearing hose!

Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

@lord_killerfish: Become a fireman?

Lenore Hoyt (landsnark) says:

Ed, I thought yesterday's filk was my favorite ever, but now today's is.

Joyce Melton (halfelven) says:

Ed, That's Cole.

Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says:

@ Lenore Hoyt: You're going to find that a *very* common occurrence. Ed's one of the most talented filkers I've ever had the pleasure to be acquainted with.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: *snerk*
Leon Arnott (l) says: Tuesday:

The sad part is that they've all been standing in that exact position for the entire ten minutes since they sent Artie in.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

@everyone: Thanks for the positive comments, but remember this is, first and foremost, Shaenon's work.  She spends hours putting together some clever writing and art, and I spend a few minutes twisting and distorting it into a sick, deformed perversion of her craft.

You're welcome.


Kay Gilbert (kaygilbert) says:

Ed, it's nothing more than a compliment to Shaenon's genius (and Jeffrey's, over on the Skin Horse side) that it inspires your own.  Now you've inspired me to write a second metafilk for you:
tune: The Rimmer Experience song (Kim Fuller & Doug Naylor, "Blue," Red Dwarf, 2/14/1997, season 7/episode 5,

When a cartoon needs a song parody
Whether rock or rap or Broadway melody
Who can we turn to?  Sing with me:

The King of Filking is Ed Gedeon
His wit is sharp, his rhyme's a ready one
We count on Ed for staunch and steady fun
Come rain or sleet or hot sun

That filking, filking, filking Gedeon
His musical oeuvre is a heady one
Let's write his name on high in red neon
Beside him, I'm a peon

Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

Wonder what they were all doing during that wait?

Eric Burns (ericburns) says: "Wonder what they were all doing during that wait?" Boggle!
Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

@Eric: I guess you're right. Prime opportunity to win whilst Artie's busy thwarting demons.

And apparently you can download Boggle for the iPhone/iPod touch from the ap store. Boggle on the go!

Jon Stout (brasswatchman) says: At least they all look vaguely concerned about Artie. It's kind of touching, in a horrible kind of way.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: *tsh*
Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

And Seth takes another step towards his destiny as the *coolest* angry nerd *ever*!

Leon Arnott (l) says: Wednesday:

Panel 3 is a pretty not-so-subtle Take That at Seth's interests.
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

Given how things are in Narbonic, Marcie could be Seth on an alternate timeline with gender swap formula.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Every Breath You Take", The Police)

Ladies' room's a wreck!
Artie risked his neck ...
Then we sent our tech,
Now it's time to check,
Someone's going in!

Someone's got to save
Artie and/or Dave ...
Someone not too brave
And whose spine's concave,
Seth is going in!

We're sending Seth
To certain death!
Yeah, he's gonna die ...
Kiss his butt bye-bye!

You can tell it's Hell,
By the brimstone smell!
Shrug and say, "Oh, well,"
Have a sandwich, Mell!
We're not going in!

Maricruz Villalobos-Zamora (maki_p) says:

Marcie and Seth being sibblings? That would be awesome!
And imagine the posibilities for crossovers!

John Campbell (jcampbel) says:

Remember, immune to electricity and poison, resistant to fire, cold, and acid. Hope they're the kind with just DR/cold iron, because I suspect good-aligned weapons are going to be difficult to come by around that lab...

Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: If you swing Artie by his tail as a -3 Morningstar, does he count as a good-aligned weapon?
Leon Arnott (l) says: Thursday:

Unfortunately for Dave and Seth, they don't have ready access to silver, no force on Earth can bless Mountain Dew, and The C Programming Bible is at most regarded as apocrypha by the Vatican.
Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

Although greatly misunderstood, a Bard using Inspire Courage would be good right now. They could feed him to the Demons and run.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

@Daffyd:  You need a bard, you say?  *ahem* ... "Compose, compose, compose, compose the amusing filksong ..."

Well, I tried to be inspiring, but I think I Burlew it.

(TUNE: "Ironic", Alanis Morissette)

In the girls' room ... we'll fight for our souls,
To avoid doom ... we'll make our save rolls!
Yes, they're awful ... but first we must find
If they're lawful ... or chaotic aligned!

And isn't it demonic ... don't you think?

They like pain ... 'cause they come from Hell!
They can drain ... your HP as well!
Fighting them's in vain ... kiss your butt farewell!
They're not just pewter figures!

Johnn Reynolds (sleepyjohn) says:

"Looking on the bright side" is not a skill one would use a lot at Narbonic Labs.

Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

@Ed: I'm not sure if I'm amused by that pun, or if I need to lock up the Mountain Dew supplies. Again.

Your *Perform* roll is: 31 (You are suddenly hit by chainmail thongs thrown by the female audience that has spontaneously gathered during your performance)

Andrew Cole (andy4hire) says:

@Ed:  O master of filks, you do what you do with such style, such--dare I say it?--elan.  Verily, you win the Internet.

Derek Burrow (derekthebard) says:

Helen Beta Narbon.  Dressed as Classic Emma "The White Queen" Frost.


Damn.  I'd forgotten about this.  Wow.

Chris Brunner (cjbrunner) says:


Leon Arnott (l) says: Friday:

Again the universe overexerts itself in reminding Dave of everything he's recently been deprived of.
Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

Instead of thier eyeballs melting, thier brains have.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Wooooooooooooo. :glands overexert:
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Brother Louie", Hot Chocolate)

Demon now ... will attack!
Things are looking quite black!
When it appeared,
It was worse than they feared ...
All the guys were taken aback!
In the ladies' latrine,
Looks like the Marvel White Queen!
Dressed like Emma Frost!
Dave mind, it was lost!
Bet he's thinking something obscene!

Hell and Hell and Hell, and we see!
"Helen, Helen, Helen," we say!
Never thought that Heaven could be
Helen in a white bustier!

Tyler Wright (tylgar) says:

And I've caught up again!  I keep getting distracted and reading the regular series again instead of trying to do this day by day, heh. 


I like how Helen plus her comic-book style outfit completely make Dave lose it.  Makes you wonder about them and cosplay later on, hm?

Sam Daniel (samhdaniel) says:

@Shaenon: If you had more, I'd certainly buy one, and I'm sure I'm not the only one....

Tyler Wright (tylgar) says:

We could have had nothing?  Awwww.

Leon Arnott (l) says: Saturday:

Dave tries to save face by referring to Helen as "my boss". Nobody is fooled.

Off-panel head inserts: 21.
Daffyd Wagstaff (lord_killerfish) says:

I would of thought Dave would be used to humiliation by now ...

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Yeah, I'd say that's a good idea.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "All Or Nothing At All", Arthur Altman & Jack Lawrence, sung by Frank Sinatra)

This, or nothing at all ...
Demons, it seems, aren't used to wearing clothes!
It didn't know that these were such daring clothes ...
It was this, this or nothing at all!

This, or nothing at all ...
Bustier, cape, and amenities ...
X-Men style, back in the seventies,
Girls wore this, or nothing at all!

Though I appear like the woman you want to date,
I'll strike fear ... straight into your heart!
And though you won't confess, should your body express a desire to mate,
I'd incinerate ... the significant part!

And so, through your subconscious mind I crawl,
Looking at outfits, deciding which one to wear ...
Still, I end up ... in leather underwear!
This ... or nothing at all!

Vlad Taltos (flyingfish) says:

Am I the only one who thinks Helen's even hotter in "this" than in "nothing"?

Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says:

@ Vlad: I dunno...

I have the feeling that, today at least, "nothing" would have been a lot better than something.

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