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Shaenon: Jason T. is, of course, my dear friend Jason Thompson, author of King of RPGs and many other things. When we do Skin Horse animated shorts, Jason should be the voice of Tip. (Andrew tried doing a Nick voice for me, but he sounded too manly.)

Also, just to clarify, yes, Jason is wearing a Steve McQueen T-shirt, and I'm wearing a T-shirt that says NERD.


Channing: This is the sort of stimulating discussion I miss by living out here in flyover country. Jason Thompson, don't ever change.

...unless "not ever changing" means that you plan on willing yourself into a deathless zombie-like existence somewhere down the line to curtail the ravages of earthly life. Please don't actually do that.


Shaenon: You know we're powerless to stop him, Jeff.

24 comments:
Michael Brewer (wusemajor) says: Personally, I'm still hoping for Irony-Chan's picture to come true.
Adam Underfoot (unnatural20) says: I see the resemblance. Even though he's only the voice.
So It Begins (soitbegins) says: *snicker*
Rasmus Eide (armok) says:

Obviously, if nick became a wearwolf, he'd shrink down to just a few decimetres in length and grow two more rotors. (yea, I just googled "wolf helicopter")

 

Seriously thou, a realistic solution would be that a wolf got into the plumbing somehow, and bit one of the dialysis machines or blood oxygenating apparatus you realistically need to keep a disembodied brain alive for longer than a few hours outside the body. These, while most likely kept fairly close to each other to minimize the amount of needed blood and such, are a much larger target than just the brain, as well as most likely less protected. More importantly however, is that there is almost certainly some degree of redundancy (most likely a triple redundancy; 2/3 of the equipment can fail and he's still alive), meaning that while a wolf bite would probably ruin the specific piece of machinery it happened to, it would not be a mortal wound, and the virus would probably quite easily escape to contaminate all the systems, as well as the brain.

As for the effects, realistically the non-biological parts of him would be unaffected, which is the majority, but the behavioural consequences would still be more than enough to make is justified, especially considering he presumably have a lot of weapons that have so far been mostly irrelevant due to his pacifism that prevents him from using them,to the point of both readers and characters almost forgetting about them.

 All considered, an infection of nick would have several storytelling uses:

- It makes it possible to elaborate most on both the exact configuration of nick biologically, as well as how the virus would affect something it's creator had not intended (he probably foresaw both humans and canines getting infected, but what happens if it tries it's morphology magic on something that's genetically human, but has gotten what is basically a full body amputation. How does the virus pull of such quick and massive morphological change in general?), I know technically Unity has been infected as well but she's biochemically different enough to be immune, so we didn't get to see that much at all.

- We get to see a massive berserk helicopter blowing stuff up.

- Character development for nick, once he is restored facing the fact that he killed a lot of people (even if they were wearwolves, and he was robed of his free will by a virus) might lead to some very interesting things. Would he go all angsty, or yet again show of his apathetic and logical side shrugging it of?

 

 

This is not a suggestion really, after all this arc is probably already planed out, and at least this point seems to be according to the above, this is more of a "what if" kind of thing to make the authors think "why didn't we think of that before it was to late!", thou it's probably to realistic and dark and serious for the style of Skin Horse anyway.
Nick Lardas (voyager) says:

Not berzerk, hunting, probably pizza delivery vans.

 

I can see it now.  whooka whooka whooka WHIRRR Pounch!  Pizza everywhere.

 

Harry Voyager

Jim Kuemmerle (jazzsammich) says:

One word:

 

 

...Airwolf.

Porsupah Ree (porsupah) says:

Curiously, Mr Google only offers me one link regarding were-helicopters. I can't help but feel this number ought to be greater. However, today's discussion has already enhanced the body of knowledge thereon quite considerably.

http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/hoax/forums/8/viewthread/8408/P187/ 

nemryn (nemryn) says: No, no, no. Nick needs to bite Sweetheart, and then she turns into a were-helicopter.
Ed Gedeon (eddurd) says:

@jazzsammich:  Good one!  (Drat, wish I'd thought of it first ...)  Anyway ...

(TUNE: "Zip-Ah-Dee-Do-Dah", Allie Wrubel and Ray Gilbert)

Were-helicopter!  Wolf in the shell!
He's a lycanthrope with VTOL!
People will look up, say "What the hell?!"
Were-helicopter!  Wolf in the shell!

Mister Nick Zerhakker's weirder!
He's got fur!  And motors!
See him spin his ly-canth-ro-tors!

Were-helicopter!  Wolf in the shell!
Sarge won't allow it ... it's just as well!

Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: Nick could ingest werewolf the same way Sully ingested birds over the Hudson.
Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says:

Rasmus-- You're right. The easiest way to infect Nick with the werewolf virus would be to get werewolf blood or other fluid into his life-support system.

...and, knowing this group, I'm now really sorry I typed, "or other fluid."
Andy Wetmore (efogoto) says:

"or other fluid" non sequitur: Amazing Super Powers noted (at http://www.amazingsuperpowers.com/2008/03/amusement/ ... I can't seem to make the link work here) that you can't spell "amusement" without "semen".

 

 

Not that this has been preying on my mind.

Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says: Um, saliva? That's a fluid. (Squicky, but still a fluid...)
John Campbell (jcampbel) says: The least repulsive of several options...
Miikka Ryökäs (kizor) says: You're probably going to come over here and slap me for daring to speak such madness, but I don't care. The art in this update is GORGEOUS.
Fandarel (fandarel) says: It is indeed peerless, beyond compare, unsurpassed, without flaw, and a masterwork. 
Fandarel (fandarel) says:

I seem to have come over all silly.

I see these two comments as read by John Cleese.

Mark H- (eyeharvester) says:

Here's another reference on "werehelicopters", this one from 3 years ago:

http://www.eyrie-productions.com/Forum/dcboard.cgi?az=show_thread&om=1803&forum=DCForumID1&omm=26&viewmode=threaded

Apparently, "Eyrie Productions" has been using werehelicopters for long enough that they're considered "the old ways". The sneaky bastards - we'll have to raid them for their secrets!

Rob (rrreed) says: I'm surprised no one has considered the most obvious choice for infecting Nick: cerebrospinal fluid!

Now, getting lycanthropy-infected cerebrospinal fluid (say that ten times fast!) into Nick's artificial circulatory system might take a bit of doing…
John Wells (johnwwells) says:

"The Chopper-Wolf"

The chopper-wolf has eyes of glass,
And brain of blood and nerve and sass
That's stewing like a CUSSING prune,
And reading Kindle-text of Dune,
As servos whirr and hours pass.

He cannot fly tonight. Alas,
His rotors won't support his mass;
He'd plummet like a lead balloon -
The chopper-wolf!

And so he sits on his IMPASSE,
He'd hoped this would be RAD-GAS,
But quickly, it became jejune.
His rotors grumble to the moon,
As servos whirr and hours pass...
The chopper-wolf!

Dov Mittelman (silentspeaker) says: Lymph. Go with lymph. FOR THE LOVE OF GOD GO WITH LYMPH.
Kevin Pease (ceruleanst) says: I thought it was obvious that he would become Airwolf.
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says:

Wait? Jason is mortal??

 

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