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Smithson Thus Far... ·

Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: Different flavors (or scents) of nightmare. Relatives are always embarrassing.
Alix Tierney (almaseti) says: They seem pretty adorable, but then, so did the werewolves...
Joyce Melton (halfelven) says: I hope it wasn't Unity that got rolled in. Dogs do love dead things.
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: Is that Buddy in the last panel?  I thought he was Alpha.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: (sigh.)
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says:

Captain Bram either was inspired by Fallout or Digdug. And, having spent hours watching various Wiggle episodes with my neice (She hates Barney. Thank God!), I'm imagining Capt. Bram with some sort of useless weapon, a science fiction version of a feathersword.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go someplace adult-like.

Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Highway To Hell", AC/DC)

In Alaska ... running scared ...
Werewolves coming from the rear!
Sweetheart's sulking ... human's weird ...
Who's the alpha critter here?
Can't look back now ... move ahead ...
Lookee here at what I found!
Pretty sure, wow ... that it's dead,
And now I'm gonna roll around ...

'Cause it's a fine way to smell!
It's a fine way to smell!
Fine way to smell!
Yeah, it's a fine way to smell!

Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says: That dog reminds me of a noseless statue ... it Sphinx!
Rob (rrreed) says: I am increasingly seeing Sweetheart as the black sheep-dog of the family.
Eric Burns (ericburns) says: Sweetheart totally herded the town, but she forgot that Tip had debuffed Unity with sandwich-promises. They need some good AoE to take them out.
Eric Burns (ericburns) says: ...oh... and she is *not* carrying around a paw with intent to replace Ramón.
EvilMid nightLurker (emlurker) says: In these conditions, Unity might very well BE freezedried.
Mason Kramer (masonk) says: I see Unity's already secured a replacement for Ramon. How fickle these zombies are...
Mason Kramer (masonk) says:

I can just see it now. Three days every month, her hand will turn into a paw and attack people randomly.

Which... isn't... really all that different from her normally, so no one will really notice.

M. Alan Thomas II (crazydreamer) says: @Mason: You have forgotten the possibility that that is Ramón and you're right about him transforming.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "The Wall", Pink Floyd)

Gotta take off, right now Biscuit!
Tip and Sweetheart on their own ...
Nasty weather, gotta risk it ...
Werewolves, leave our team alone ...
       Hey!  Werewolves!
       Please don't eat Ramon!
By and by, we'll try to
Save our team on the fly ...

Nate Cull (natecull) says:

(TUNE: "Peace Train", Cat Stevens)

Now I've been camping lately
thinking about the mobs to come
and I believe it could be
a TPK has begun

Oh I've been lol'ing lately
dreaming about the world as one
great big zerg rush
cause we aggro'd the whole town

Yeah out on the edge of darkness
there rides the Aggro Train
Aggro Train gonna kick our butts now
time to respawn again

Aggro Train roll initiative
everyone jump on the Aggro Train

Robert Hutchinson (ertchin) says: *giggles at Nick's first lines*
Four Deer (fourdeerinmyyard) says:

LOLly appreciations of the musical offerings.

Oh, and the strip too....

Four Deer (fourdeerinmyyard) says: M. Alan Thomas II (crazydreamer) says: @Mason: You have forgotten the possibility that that is Ramón....

But Ramon got et.  We saw no hint of Unity pausing to retrieve anything on her way out of town, nor of her carrying anything as she dashed through the woods with Tip and Sweetheart, although I supposed she could have grabbed the mangled remains of Ramon -- the remains of Ramon, there’s got to be a really stupid song in there somewhere -- and shoved them into the pocket of her hoodie when we weren’t looking.  But I think the more likely scenario for that paw is that she picked up a little souvenir as she fought her way alone through the forest to Nick.  More or less instinctively:  “I’m missing a little something; hey, this guy’s not going to be using his for a while....”

Psst, Shaenon!  Can you de-transpose something after you post it?  “Hey, it’s our local ReDead”, not “Hey, our it’s ...”.  Not a biggie, ‘cause I read it at first as “Hey, it’s our....”
Scott Lawrence (risky) says:

Did biscuit spoonerize? It's possible, could be the weather affecting his melon.

 btw, birdo ftw, I lol'd.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY!
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says:

Gah! I totally did not read that as "our it's" until 4deer pointed it out. 

nottahottie uglyogre (nottahottie) says: I am trying to imagine a werewolve in pearls and a June Cleaver dress...
Bill Livingston (billfl) says:


Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: Online RPG term: it means that they have drawn the attention of a monster who will now try to kill you.  Needless to say, Aggroing a large group without being prepared is usually a very bad thing.
Rob (rrreed) says: It'll be interesting to see if these werewolves/wolfweres are (a) "natural", (b) "supernatural", (c) "superscientific", or (d) two or more of the above. I'd normally go with (c), given the premise of this strip and Narbonic, but I wouldn't put it past Shaenon and Jeff going with (b) just to make things even more interesting.

Mad Thaumaturgy! That's the ticket!
Four Deer (fourdeerinmyyard) says:

I am trying NOT to imagine a werewolf in pearls and a June Cleaver dress.

Michael, thank you for edifying the nongaming among us concerning the expanded connotation of aggro to a gamer like Nick.  I was taking it as short for aggravation in the ordinary sense, and did not quite understand Nick's emphatic reaction.

As for "our it's", I consider it the hand-lettered version of a typo, and I consider typos to be acts of ghod:  could happen to anybody at any time.

nottahottie uglyogre (nottahottie) says: Oh, pearls, a June Cleaver dress ***&*** low heel pumps with a nice ankle chain [nods vigorously] after all, accessories are the shiznit
Andrew Schepler (schep) says: Yup, looks like that paw is already attached.  If you've gotta be a patchwork of spare fleshy parts, a were-hand definitely scores some awesomeness points.
EvilMid nightLurker (emlurker) says: ...And she uses her cheek as a pincushion.  Le ouch.
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: Wouldn't you?
Nate Cull (natecull) says:

(TUNE: "Red Right Hand", Nick Cave)

She takes a little walk to the edge of town
Werewolves on her track
Where Nick the Chopper looms
Like the guy from Doom
Downloading Warcraft hacks
What secrets lie in his laser eyes
In his humming wires?
Hey man you know
She's never coming back
Past the cafe, past the store
Past the piggy, past the packs
On a gathering storm
Flies a tall handsome gal
With a patchwork coat
And a furry new hand


Erin Palette (palette) says: Pincushion? I thought it was a boom mic for cockpit communication. Propellers can get awfully noisy.
M. Alan Thomas II (crazydreamer) says: No, no, you can see the thread running from the needle to her wrist in panel 2 before she sticks it in her cheek between panels 2 and 3.
Four Deer (fourdeerinmyyard) says:

Yup, she interrupts herself in the midst of sewing on her new south paw to muse upon her most rewarding next move absent direct orders, and, just as I do, she sticks the needle into the nearest available stickable object where it won't get lost.  And kudos to Shaenon for being able to convey all that so clearly in the space left underneath the crowdy word balloons.

Nice, Nate.

So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Heh.
James Kehl (shykta) says:

Is it just me, or has she attached a right paw to her left hand?


David Harmon (mental_mouse) says:

James Kehl:  I think you're right.

You know, this raises the not-so-old question of what happens to someone who bites a werewolf... or otherwise incorporates part of the WW's body into their own.  ;-)

Erik Waer (raistandantilus) says: Let's just hope she woun't need two opposable thumbs any time in the near future.
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: Unity is Dora from Finding Nemo.
Typhin Reynard (typhin) says: "It's a well-known fact that if you're bitten by a zombie, bite back and you can recover." -- Sign in a hosptial in Threed (Earthbound)
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "So Much In Love", All-4-One)

When Tip asked, "Do you need a hand now?"
I said, "No, I'll just help myself!"
Sewing paw to my wrist;
Though I can't quite make a fist!
It's a flaw (minor flaw) ...
This werewolf paw (werewolf paw) ...

Hey, I like when Tip's in command now ...
I can fight, and get sam-mi-ches!
Stupid wolves ate Ramon,
Now with pain those critters groan!
Then I saw (then I saw)
This werewolf paw (werewolf paw) ...
Fresh and raw!  (Nice and raw!)
I'll sew this paw!

nottahottie uglyogre (nottahottie) says: Well, better not no one kill her paw, neither!
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: Hachiko?
Jacob Haller (jwgh) says: This confirms something I've been thinking for a while: Nick is the comic's superego.
Richard Wendling (misterflames) says:

Hachiko was a dog known for his faithfulness to his master.  There is, of course, an article on Wikipedia about him. 

<a href="">This might work</a> or it might not.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Tiny Dancer", Elton John)

Poor old Sweetheart
Was an upstart;
She left her only pack ...
Had to move on
To the Yukon,
(Fetching Unity a snack)!

And then soo-oon
Came full moo-oon,
And werewolves did attack!
Found her sibs, though;
Like Hachiko,
She can't stop coming back ...

Come on closer, little Sweetheart!
Join the pack and huddle tight!
'Cause with you, we're a complete part!
You've had a busy night tonight ...

Dave Van Domelen (dvandom) says: Unity isn't so much disloyal as easily dis...SQUIRREL!
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Heh.
Nate Cull (natecull) says:

TUNE: "The Cat Came Back", various

 Old Captain Bram had troubles of his own
He had a sentient dog pack which wouldn't leave his home
He died and they ate him (respectfully) one day
And one of them went a-travelling, far far away

But Sweetheart came back
She went to work for Skin Horse
but Sweetheart came back
She just couldn't stay away

They sent her to a lion frightened by monkeys
Raised by Doctor Bloodworth to crush his enemies
The king of beasts was shamed to say that he was really scared
When Tip brought out the therapy puppets things got weird

But Sweetheart came back...

She visited the Deathbots in their half-way house
Kill-O-Trons 1 to 3 were gentle as a mouse
Despite all prejudices they were gainfully employed
Fixing snacks for guests to be destroyed destroyed destroyed

But Sweetheart came back...

Down in the basement the Borrowers were rife
Their many clans were riven by operatic strife
In strode our heroes bringing order to the room
And now the giant crystal brains plot our final doom

But Sweetheart came back...

Created to conquer the decadent USA
Impose the values of the North and make the sinners pay
The rampaging killer instinct burning in her eyes
She gave that one poor Starbucks cup a heckuva surprise

And now Sweetheart's come back
come to join her siblings
now Sweetheart's come back
she won't ever go away...

KaT Adams (kat_adams) says: Was that a Nana reference? *fan-squee*
Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: Why couldn't Sweetheart just offer the pack the chance to work in Skin Horse? They'd fit in with the rest of the oddballs.
Four Deer (fourdeerinmyyard) says:

Skin Horse has enough chain-of-command issues without bringing in additional competitors for alpha.

The entire saga, almost, in filk!  Kudos, Nate.

Joyce Melton (halfelven) says: Males are so cute when they're deluded like that.
Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says: We're good at barking without thinking, then thinking we're barking sense. I think. At least my wife tells me so.
Alix Tierney (almaseti) says: I love the little "wag wag" effect. So cute.
John Campbell (jcampbel) says: Aw. Sweetheart's ears just make me want to hug her.
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: Buddy seems to flip between being a reasonably competant military officer and an idiot.  I wonder if its just a dog thing or if he is actually brain damaged?
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

(TUNE: "Surrender", Cheap Trick)

No time for reunions, Sweetheart!  Werewolves on our trail!
I will pass on Sparkle's orders, then I'll wag my tail!
Later on, if things calm down, we'll sniff each other's butts ...
Catch up on news and maybe have poutine!

Buddy, do this!  Pokey, do that!  And Ginger, do what she said!
I'm alpha!  I'm alpha!  'Cause Sparkle says it's me ... meeee ... wheeeeeeeeeee!

Benjamin Whetham (crosshair) says: I bet it's hard top open doors to the labs without thumbs.
Nate Cull (natecull) says: Sometimes I doubt your commitment to motion, Sparkle.
Matthew Mather (madtinkerer) says:

I don't have much experience with dogs, but my cats are similar: When we let them outdoors, they're all business. Ruthless killers of rabbits and birds, jealous guardians of their territory (which stretches into the next-door neighbors' yards), dedicated to conservation of energy (napping).

When they're indoors, they're our cuddly little snugglebuddies who love sitting on our laps when we watch TV.

Sherri Alexander (enigmaticfox) says: Is that a "Pokey Little Puppy" reference I'm spotting here?  :D (you brought me out of lurkdom to post this, I'm loving this comic!)
Steve Ford (fordsfords) says: I had to read it a second time and pay attention to Sparkle's ear notch, but once I realized who was saying what, I laughed!  Out loud!  For reals!
Patricia Lupien (plupien) says: I can just hear Buddy as Ralph Wiggum with this last line.
Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

I'll leave it to readers with military experience to weigh in on whether it's possible to be both a competent officer and kind of an idiot.

More than anything, Buddy's a dog.
Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says: @ Shaenon: Apparently Captain Sobel (played by David Schwimmer) in HBO's "Band of Brothers" (and the Real Life man that he's based on) was a reasonably competent training officer, but was Utter Fail when it came to actual combat.
Ray Phoenix (graypheonix) says: Again repeated, Reduced?
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: I think Buddy was impliying that he did it anyway.
Rob (rrreed) says: Sparkle's summation of the Pack's situation implies that the transformation of the townsfolk is not limited to nights of the full moon. Curiouser and curiouser.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: Egad.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

Well, if "you are what you eat", it's no wonder Sweetheart's pack has been treating her so shhhhiiiiivalrously.

Nate Cull (natecull) says:

I see circuit breakers blowin'
I see trouble on the way
This town is full to overflowin'
Werewolves is poachin' all our game

Don't come round for tea
Got nothin' left to eat
There's a famine on the rise

Andrew Kunz (miyaa) says: Okay, since when did Shaenon decide to incorporate ecology into a werewolf story?
nottahottie uglyogre (nottahottie) says: Hmmm... I must be approaching from the wrong perspective... some of this is escaping me.
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The education bestowed on Shaenon K. Garrity by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged. ... full profile