Dave in Slumberland

Aaaand another prescient Slumberland strip. This is a complicated one.

The first panel is based on a well-known Little Nemo image of Nemo and the Princess riding in a dragon’s mouth; it appeared in both the strip and in a Little Nemo animated short Winsor McCay created for the vaudeville circuit. It’s a fantastic piece of animation. You can see it here.

Most of the other visual elements are taken from miscellaneous other Little Nemo strips. The plaza in the second panel was really hard for me to draw. I’ve never been any good at perspective drawing.

BIG TIME SPOILERS: As usual, the Slumberland strip foreshadows material in the coming year of Narbonic. The girl in the cage is Zeta, who will appear with her natural hair color in “Mad Science Is Decadent and Depraved.” The experiment in the covered cage is Dave himself. “Mainly it’s OK” is an anagram for “Milo Tinasky,” a name that plays a major part in “Professor Madblood and the Lovelace Affair.”

In the next-to-last panel, the landscape over which Dave and Helen fly represents the continuity of the strip. From left to right, we have the jungles of the Dave Conspiracy prison island, the Moon, the Narbonics Labs entrance elevator representing the present day, the Brazillian mountains where Dr. Narbon’s lair will be located in 2005, the Arctic with ice floes, and, in the sky, the flying hamster island. I’d just come up with the flying island around this time, and I was really proud of myself.

7 thoughts on “Dave in Slumberland

  1. I am always surprised how far ahead you have planned your comic.  In most of the webcomics I’ve read, the author lets things just happen, and the story eventually falls apart because each story becomes a repeat of the last one, the story diverges from the elements that made it interesting/popular, or the characters have painted themselves into an inescapable corner with nowhere to go.

  2. This is a fine strip indeed. From here, the island in the middle of Narbonic, the entire comic surrounds us. So many tumults have we witnessed together; so many calamities are yet to be seen. And, of course, we are in sight of the Great Mystery that binds the whole story together.

    It is, I suppose, more of an accident than deliberate intention that this summary episode occurs this close to the middle point of Narbonic’s run (the actual middle point being, if my calculations are correct, this strip) given that our author had only intended this tale to run to 2005. If so, then a fine accident it must be.

  3. I am always stunned and amazed at the great artwork in the “Slumberland” strips.  I love the way you combine the Narbonic cast with McCay’s characters and art style.

    Two notes: (1) I felt so sorry for Zeta, stuck in that cage; and (2) What the heck is up with Helen’s skirt in panel 8?  Considering that her back is toward the “future” landscape, it could truly be said that the end is in sight.

  4. Just a thought, did Dave’s subconcious gain slight precognative abilities from being unstuck in time? Or did he unknowingly dump his future memories into his younger self, whilst picking up the memories of his future self?

    I like the second theory. That way, his subconcious memories from his future self are trying to warn him of what’s coming, in the form of these dreams.

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