That’s a pretty big girder Dave’s toting in this strip. I never explicitly brought it up, but Dave’s a bit stronger than you might expect. He’s a big guy. Also, I suspect Helen might have tweaked him a little when she brought him back from the dead.
I ended up using the gender-swap formula several times over the course of Narbonic. In general, I tried to use inventions from earlier in the story wherever they would be useful. And I did kind of enjoy drawing the reverse-gender Helen and Dave.
Look how happy Helen is to be infiltrating the Dave Conspiracy! Who could ever be so heartless as to deny her this simple pleasure? I ask you.
Well, it’d be hard to smuggle Mell into the convention. And Helen really does worry about Mell’s education, strangely enough. I figured I’d keep her and Artie out of play until later, when Helen would need Mell for firepower and Artie for…well, clinging desperately to whatever’s handy and explaining things, which is pretty much all he does.
The radiation cabinet in the last panel has magnetic poetry on it.
This is so ridiculous I still kinda like it. “Gabba gabba hey” is sort of from the movie Freaks, and more from the Ramones’ version of the line from the movie Freaks.
Boy Helen actually looks kind of menacing in the first panel. The goatee really helps.
There are lots of little gerbil tails hanging out of the wastebasket in the last panel. This is not the correct way to dispose of your gerbils. Also, I notice I’ve once again drawn a Sea Monkeys Ocean Zoo among Helen’s lab equipment. I had one on my desk at work.
Gosh, I still love this strip. It’s such a ridiculous conversation. Also, the identities Dave and Helen come up with for themselves are actually pretty good.
Dr. Pretorius is the madder mad scientist in Bride of Frankenstein, a movie that comes up repeatedly in Narbonic. The SEAL Team 6 thing is an admittedly obscure nod to a MSTing my ex-boyfriend Kevin did of a terrible RPG fanfic called “The Seven Stars.” Here are the first few chapters of Kevin’s treatment.
As I’ve mentioned before, one reason I had Dave drive aesthetically unappealing cars was that I was terrible at drawing cars, so I figured my ugly drawings would at least match the ugliness of the original car. It almost works here, in that this is quite an unattractive car. Wish I hadn’t gone with the grey fills, though.
Mell’s line is from Bugs Bunny, of course. Storage Room C is, I’m pretty sure, the only storage room ever mentioned in Narbonic. It’s like Fibber McGee’s closet in there.