When this first ran I didn’t have the thought-balloon pattern along the edge of the panel to indicate that most of this was going on in Dave’s head, and it was way too confusing. I went back and changed it later.
Helen’s really into milkshakes in this storyline. I think Andrew and I had just gotten a blender.
Yes, through Helen’s intervention, Dave will manage to change one (1) of these things about himself.
This is one of the few times Dave indicates that he doesn’t like his smoking habit. Originally, I had planned a storyline where Dave tries to quit caffeine, fails, then tries to quit smoking and fails. It never gelled and I gave up on it. It’s kind of a shame, because establishing Dave as someone who’s been trying and failing to quit smoking would have made this storyline stronger.
The deranged sun popping out of Helen’s head is awesome despite being a visual element clearly lifted from the comic strip Rose Is Rose.
I wrote this strip and several others in this week way, way early, possibly back in 1999. “Unstuck in Time” was one of the first storylines I came up with, and a lot of the scripts are very old. That’s why there isn’t much of Artie in this storyline; back when I was first developing Narbonic, I didn’t have a grasp of Artie’s character, and I wrote a lot of material that didn’t include him at all.
The teleporter is visible in the first panel. Continuity!
Really simple gag, but that’s fine. Simple is good. Speaking of simple, is this an awesomely easy-to-draw time machine, or what? I’m so lazy.
Happy New Year! I’m writing commentary on strips I wrote exactly ten years ago. Yikes.
Finally, a week and a half into “Unstuck in Time,” we get some damn time travel! I guess what makes this one is Helen’s confused expression in the last panel. She really thinks she’s doing Dave a favor with this stuff. Maybe she’s right.
Also, can we get some love for Helen’s time-machine operating helmet? It’s based on the helmet Dr. Wonmug wears to operate his time machine in the comic strip Alley Oop. I was really getting into Alley Oop around this time. It’s a great strip I wish I’d read earlier so I could’ve stolen more material for Narbonic.
“Step up the power three more triangles” is a standard callback line at The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I think this is the only direct Rocky Horror reference in Narbonic, which is a little surprising, since it’s been a bigger influence on my comics than I’d probably like to admit. I used to go all the time in high school.
Hate those grey fills. But you know that.