Er, yes comic Saturday Sept. 7th because of why not

3 Comments on Er, yes comic Saturday Sept. 7th because of why not

Updated: instead of there being no comic yesterday, there is silly sketch of this script comic today. Huzzah!

I am at the actual beach this morning! Not an imaginary beach, no dead Jennifer Siskos around, just a plain normal Pacific Northwest beach with overcast skies and rain and saltwater and seafood and so on.

And because I’m at the beach, I do not have photoshop or my headshot collection with me, so it’s just literally impossible for a comic strip to happen.

GEORDI: Unless…

GEORDI: Captain, what if we invert the temporal coil shielding? We could divert the tachyon flow back into the beachometer–

DATA: Thus creating a chronometric “echo” of a future comic strip. There is a theoretical basis for this idea, sir.

PICARD: Picard to writers, you’re needed on the bridge.


PICARD: Writers. Script doctors. Line editors. This is no milk run you’re suggesting; who knows what we’ll encounter on the tachyonarrative threshold? We’ll need a team ready to contain and repair any critical plotholes.

GEORDI: Uh, well, sir, there’s–

RIKER: Sir, there are no writers.

PICARD: Well, call them in, I don’t care if they’re on shore leave, this is an emerg–

RIKER: No, sir, I mean there are no writers. There never have been. We’re in a fan-written webcomic, sir. It’s one guy. And he’s at the beach.



Trek in the Park!

2 Comments on Trek in the Park!

This is a crazy wonderful thing that a theater group in Portland called Atomic Arts has been putting on for five years running; it went from tiny in the first year to just huuuuuuuge these days, with probably a couple thousand people showing up yesterday at Cathedral Park for one of the final performances.

I went with my wife and staked out some decent watching space early in the day so we could see it with a bunch of Metafilter friends, and it was a lovely time. I took a bunch of photos of the performance and the crowd; here’s a few below, but you can check out all of the Trek in the Park photos on my flickr account.



Call the Enterprise a garbage scow, will ye.

Call the Enterprise a garbage scow, will ye.

Kirk gets fuzzy.

Kirk gets fuzzy.

Also, Garrett “Ensign Kim from Voyager” Wang flew in from DragonCon for a one-line cameo.

Garrett Wang, everybody.

Garrett Wang, everybody.

June 21st is a Not Today Friday.

1 Comment on June 21st is a Not Today Friday.

Poor planning and poorer sleep have contrived to make this one of those days when it ain’t gonna happen, folks. We’ll pick up with Vash & Co on Monday.

Consolation prize: another Metafilter thread about Star Trek, this time nominally about Star Trek Voyager and why it’s the best Trek but the thread’s actually mostly about how that assertion is poorly made and poorly defended in the linked article and also some arguing about what if anything was good about Voyager.

SPOILER ALERT: People end up disagreeing about a lot of things.

Babel kinda punted on the interesting “what do you do when you lose language” question

5 Comments on Babel kinda punted on the interesting “what do you do when you lose language” question

Some elaboration on my thoughts from earlier on the episode today’s strip is referencing: seriously, it is a little bit of a downer that in the episode of Deep Space Nine that I’m riffing on here, Babel, the writers treated being struck aphasic by the mystery ailment as a good reason to just stop paying any attention to that character for the rest of the episode. You’ve got a problem? Okay, go be off-camera now, you’re clearly useless.

(The very brief synopsis, if you don’t remember this one: back when DS9 was a Cardassian station as part of the decades-long occupation of Bajor, a brilliant Bajoran scientist/rebel planted a language-virus device intended to fuck with the Cardassians by rendering them mutually unintelligible. Instead, it stayed dormant until the Federation showed up, and first Miles O’Brien and then a bunch of other folks started getting sick; first some flu-like symptoms, and then aphasia, and then apparently death not long after which makes you wonder why the aphasia was even part of it but okay. It’s a race against time as many main cast members also start speaking nonsense! Kira saves the day by finding and infecting a guy who helped design the virus, who finds the antidote even as Kira herself succumbs! End.)

And, so, I get that that’s just the story they were writing — it’s an epidemic plot, first one person gets sick and then another and then it’s everybody and OH GOSH RACE AGAINST TIME FOR THE CURE — and I can totally understand that accordingly they were focusing on the narrative through-line from infection to discovery to urgent race for a solution. I’m not saying it’s an inherently problematic plot or anything.

But at the same time, what if they’d actually tackled the idea of a clever, headstrong motley command staff reacting to being struck effectively dumb by this virus by working around the verbal barrier? I mean, when, in any good Star Trek story, has a core crew’s reaction to adversity been “oh well, I suppose I’ll lie down now and wait for someone else to come up with a solution”?

If Bashir can’t keep working on his attempt to cure the virus in his usual way because speaking to the computer is out, why not try and work with a still-able assistant via drawings or touch? If Sisko can’t give commands verbally or read console text, you think he wouldn’t try and work off visuals on the dozens of displays in Ops? And so on. These people do not accede willingly to affliction or roadblock.

Considering how beloved Darmok turned out to be, it feels conspicuous in retrospect that an episode from the same period of Star Trek production and one similarly premised off a linguistic conceit (however deeply hazily presented) didn’t do more to engage with the communicative consequences of that conceit. It could have easily been a far more interesting episode of television had they gone in that direction.

No strip Friday May 17th

1 Comment on No strip Friday May 17th

Sorry, folks, it’s not happening today. I’ve got a couple things in the hopper but the part of my brain responsible for turning ideas into an actual comic strip has gone on strike for the morning.

As a consolation prize, you could go read through thsi delightful Metafilter thread about Star Trek, in which people spend a little time arguing about why Matthew Yglesias’ rankings of each Star Trek series and of various characters therein is either Totally On The Money or The Craziest Bullshit Ever, before moving on to just sort of bullshit with each other about every goddam thing.

For those of you who aren’t that familiar with Metafilter already, note that I go by “cortex” over there.