Oh, look! The very first set of Halloween costumes! I think I got at least one costume photo each year (there might have been one year with no photos), which always made me very happy. I originally had text identifying the folks on the next page; they are Vassar friends Dillon Font, Elizabeth “E” Willse, and Caitlin Feeley. You may recall Caitlin as the winner of the Give Dave a Last Name contest, and Dillon as the guy who said Dave was cute in the “Sexy Bundle of Evil Lovin'” strip.
Tesla really did claim to have invented a death ray capable of shooting airplanes out of the sky from hundreds of miles away. Of course, he was pretty far gone at that point. It’s for statements like this that he’s the patron saint of mad scientists.
The first Lord of the Rings movie hadn’t come out at the time this strip was drawn, so Dave’s costume is indeed a little obscure. I think dressing him as Gandalf was another Mark Schumann idea.
Tamara is a college friend. In these early months of the strip, she also made some awesome online paper dolls and stuff.