Okay, this is a very silly and self-indulgent week of strips, but I kind of like it. I designed it specifically in honor of the one-year anniversary of Narbonic, as a way of recapping the events of the previous year and catching everyone up on the status quo. Having done this at the one-year mark, of course, I proceeded to never do it again.
Those are some tasty-looking milkshakes.
In other, non-milkshake-related news, I started a new daily webstrip! It’s called Skin Horse, and it’s located, logically enough, at Skin-Horse.com. It’s cowritten by Jeffrey Wells and myself and drawn by me. I hope you like it. And Happy New Year!
Madblood is doing his mother’s grocery shopping. In the background, I can make out Cyna Bon Cereal, featuring a character from a comic Andrew was working on at the time; Presidential Puffs, a cereal featured in an episode of the old Nickelodeon series “The Adventures of Pete and Pete”; and a box labeled simply MY SPOON IS TOO BIG!, a line from the Don Hertzfeldt short “Rejected.” Good lord, I must have been going mad.
I do like the New Yorker panel, though. Please note the proofreader’s marks along the edge of the Eye of Horus altar.
Dana looks totally wasted in the third panel. Poor Dana.
The Haight-Ashbury Gap actually went out of business a few months ago. Go figure.
For the curious, Dana and her hippie are outside the Hahn’s Hibachi that used to be on lower Haight, across from Memphis Minnie’s. This particular branch of Hahn’s (there are several throughout San Francisco) had, in addition to the usual menu of Korean barbecue, a soul food menu, courtesy of its resident soul food cook, Chef René. I don’t know why this Hahn’s Hibachi had a soul food cook, but Andrew and I were extremely fond of Chef René’s food and his amazing menu descriptions (only quote I can remember: “With my fried chicken and my fried shrimp, the two greatest forces of the universe combine on your plate”). One evening we went into Hahn’s and both Chef René and the soul food menu were gone. A while later, that branch of Hahn’s went out of business and became a Naan ‘n Curry, and we started going across the street to Memphis Minnie’s for our barbecue fix, like everyone else in the city. Chef René, wherever you are, God bless.
You can see both Chef René and Andrew inside the restaurant.
The ur-gerbils have ferry tickets. Like Don Rickles says, don’t ask, just buy it.
In the ensuing months, the ur-gerbils will somehow make their way from San Francisco to a remote island off the coast of Brazil, possibly by commandeering the ferry. This is the last we’ll see of them for a while.
First appearance of this particular top-secret shadow conspiracy. Note the “D”s on the delivery Dave’s uniform.
As this strip establishes, Dr. Narbon didn’t invent the teleporter, but simply borrowed it from the Conspiracy. Her credentials as a mad scientist really are pretty shaky sometimes. Much, much, much later it will be revealed that Dr. Narbon assembled the teleporter for the Conspiracy from blueprints the Conspiracy received from the future. It all kind of roughly makes sense.
Since we cut from the Conspiracy speculating about God to me, apparently I’m the god of the Narboniverse. This doesn’t jibe with Mell’s claim, many years later, to have kicked God in the nuts, although if anyone can find a way to kick a woman in the nuts, it’s probably Mell.
As you can see, my divine duties at this time included hauling boxes around the Viz offices. That’s my reception desk in the background, complete with the ginormous stuffed Doraemon that used to sit there. I’m wearing a T-shirt with one of those little white forest spirits from “Princess Mononoke.” In the third panel, I’m holding a copy of Revolutionary Girl Utena, an anime I was very fond of at the time.
The photo of Dave Barker is lifted, of course, from Dave and the Magic Shirt.
Note that I manage to continue the chain: I wonder how Dave’s doing, and Monday’s strip cuts back to Dave.