Holy crud, I can’t believe we’re already up to the beginning of the Very Long Fanfic of Jeffrey C. Wells. Jeffrey first wrote to me in January 2002, alerting me to certain surface similarities between Narbonic and a story he was posting online, “Mundementia One”:
A nascent Mad scientist, a spastic flunky with a taste for heavy weaponry, a hapless straight man and an opening battle in a laboratory against a literate and educated professor type wielding a gun.
Ye gods, Miss. I didn’t realize the collective unconsciousness had an entry for things like this.
We corresponded for a while, and eventually he wrote what I cannot stress enough is a very long and involved Narbonic fanfic. I was so delighted to receive awesome fanfiction that I started serializing it on Sundays, not realizing how long it would ultimately be. Have I mentioned this is a really darn long fanfic?
Anyway, Jeff and I became friends, and now we’re writing a strip together. As the Wild Dada Ducks say, it is funny how fate takes its cut.
The “Non-Pornographic” qualifier was necessary because there was a dare going around the mailing list at one point to write smutty Narbonic fanfiction. People sent me a few. You don’t get to see those.
All the illustrations for “A Brief Moment of Culture” are based, for no particular reason, on John R. Neill’s illustrations for the Oz books. I had a big stack of Oz books for reference. The first and last ones here actually turned out pretty good, all things considered. I used the last illustration for a T-shirt at one point.
This entire epic is based on a throwaway line in a strip a while back wherein Artie mentions that he had to come to D-Con because Mell blew up the gerbil pens back home. It’s all written from Artie’s point of view, although Jeffrey has told me that his favorite character in Narbonic is Dana, the insane, doomed superintelligent gerbil who doesn’t actually appear all that much. Go figure. Artie is probably my favorite character, for what it’s worth.
In a much later storyline, I managed to work in a scene of Artie playing “Boggle” with Mell (and Seth) as a tribute to this installment of the fanfic. The Boggle square in the above illustration spells out “Hapax Legomenon,” my tiny tribute to my other long-running and overly labor-intensive Sunday feature.
I played the French horn in high school band.