This strip is just here to move the plot along, although Dave identifying himself as not only evil, but more evil than a demon, is pretty
interesting. Then again, it’s not like Caliban is an especially evil demon. He tries, but not very hard.
I realize now that my concept of monsters in kids’ rooms is influenced by the several dozen times I saw “Poltergeist” as a kid. It used to
be on HBO, like, all the time. I thought it was a comedy except for the scene where a guy peels his face off.
I wrote this one long after most of the strips in this storyline, mainly as a way of getting Artie into the story. He isn’t in this story much.
In a much later Narbonic strip, Mell comments that Dave needed the ladies’ civilizing influence. Mell’s not the most trustworthy judge,
This is one case where the technobabble really is technobabble. Because mitochondria are genetically weird (they have their own
genetic material separate from the rest of the cell), they’re a popular choice for technobabble explanations in science fiction. I was
probably thinking of Madeleine L’Engle’s Wrinkle in Time books. The ansible is an enormously useful fictional device invented by
Ursula K. LeGuin and used by many, many science-fiction writers; it’s the thing that allows planets and spaceships to communicate
instantaneously even when they’re light-years apart.
The backgrounds here are all based on panels from “Alley Oop.” I was totally into “Alley Oop.”
I thought it was important to clarify that, although Helen knows that Dave is unstuck in time, she can’t figure out exactly when
and where he is or see anything he sees. This comes up again later in the storyline, so I must have been worried that people might
The art in this week of strips is pretty good. It’s nice that I bothered to draw backgrounds and weird little mad-scientific devices. Good
I can’t remember where I got the “synchronicity” idea. Even when I was drawing these strips, I couldn’t quite remember. A lot of the
strips in this storyline were written almost exactly ten years ago, when I was still in college, and they’re mysterious and baffling to me
I remember the second panel of this being virtually identical to the thumbnail. Getting Helen’s crude doodle of Dave right was crucial.
In the first panel you can see copies of Maniagnosis and The New Journal of Malology, the two mad-science journals that appear
most often in Narbonic.
Let’s face it, there’s no other way this situation could have played out.