It is possible that these are actual endearments used by actual people who may or may not be Andrew and myself. No comment.
Helen’s poster advertises Vigoradium, one of many turn-of-the-century radioactive health products. Back in the early days of radiation science, people weren’t sure exactly how it worked, but it could be used to treat diseases like cancer, so it must be healthy. Right? So people bought radioactive drinks and pitchers that would irradiate your water and whatnot. Until people’s jaws started falling off. This is one of the reasons the U.S. now has the FDA.
Iris has threatened to run her Sailor Moon game in the past. Now she’s finally made good. This was based on a game run by my friend Laura, the basis for Iris.
Freddy, the blond guy, is wearing a T-shirt that reads “Mock Man.” Mockman Press is the imprint of my friend Jason Thompson, the basis for Freddy. Speaking of which, go order Jason’s new Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath graphic novel collection! It’s great!
I love Dave’s little tweed cap. I used to wear caps like this all the time, but I kept losing them. It was too heartbreaking.
Eric, the goateed fellow, is wearing a Mick Foley “WANTED: Cactus Jack” T-shirt. Because Eric is awesome, that’s why. I love the way he came out in this strip, by the way.
Iris’s game, what little we hear of it, is loosely based on the Hades arc of the manga Saint Seiya, a.k.a. Knights of the Zodiac, which I edited for Viz, and which is also awesome.
Man, Iris has giant arms in that third panel.
This comes up later in Narbonic, but now there’s a whole other “Battlestar Galactica” for Dave to acquire on DVD. It’s a great big beautiful tomorrow.
For the first time, I went to the trouble of having the gaming group sit around a table and drawing it from different angles, instead of having them all sit in a row, Knights of the Dinner Table style. This represents a lot of effort on my part, so I hope yinz appreciate it.
This strip is supposed to be a setup for horrible destructive things happening to Iris’s house, but not everybody seems to get it. So, um, sorry. Sometimes writing is hard.
As I’ve mentioned before, Iris is based on my friend Laura. Her husband collects insects, and they’ve got a pretty sweet bug collection in their house. They also have a lot of nerd toys, hence the action figures under glass in the first panel. Incidentally, I believe they’re Sailor Moon, Batman, and Death.
You can tell I was trying to put some effort into actually drawing backgrounds and stuff. I’m not sure what plane each individual item exists on, but at least there’s recognizable appliances and cabinetry and so on. And Dave’s even got a two-liter of the popular Ellmann’s Own soda.
The apple in the first panel is based on a supermarket Disney encyclopedia when I was a kid. The subject of that particular volume was art, and there was a page where Mickey and friends showed you how to paint shades of color using a painting of an apple as an example. The apple had this enormously exaggerated, multi-colored shine that, even as a kid, struck me as weird-looking. For years, growing up, I wondered if I had some kind of vision problem because the colors on that apple, the very model of Disney-approved coloring, looked wrong to me. I was close to 30 before it occurred to me that it was probably just a badly-painted apple.
Also, I never did learn how to do shading.