This strip is, of course, pretty damn silly, but it’s where Artie’s personality officially coelesces. Throughout “Smart Gerbils” and the first part of “Dr. Narbon,” I don’t quite have a handle on him, but what we have here is pretty much Artie as he will be for the rest of Narbonic: a well-meaning, doggedly progressive, frequently misguided organizer and peacemaker cast amid people who live to blow things up and are as organizable as a herd of cats (and Artie doesn’t do well with cats). But he keeps plugging away. Poor dumb little supergenius.
Kevin Mowery is the ex-boyfriend glimpsed in the background of the second Narbonic strip. Steven Chin was an intern at the Cartoon Art Museum who apparently made the mistake of looking at Narbonic at some point. Jeffrey Johnson hails from the old MST3K Usenet group.
That photo still cracks me up. Nothing beats a cat with a totally bonkers expression on its furry cat face, beating the literal stuffing out of some mice. Thanks again, Jennifer Myer!