Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Comic 643: Irresponsibility

Guest posting this week is still Person #1! woo hoo

Alright. Let's do this you guys, let me take you all on a love adventure.


First and foremost, I personally liked this one. It gave me a little chuckle. I know many of you disagree, but I don't care because Person #1 is taking over this blog and there is nothing you can do about it!

That being said, there are flaws in this comic and I will point them out! First of all, as Sam F points out correctly, the sentence is structured slightly awkwardly. "Remember: with great power comes great resistance times current squared" would not only read much better (I stumbled over the current squared at first, and am apparently not the only one), but the "res" in resistance also further alludes to the word "responsibility", as in "with great power comes great responsibility". This is simple enough to fix and just further demonstrates how Randall would benefit from an editor.

so much better!

I also find it appalling that Randall, with a complete lack of any evidence whatsoever would accuse Ohm of plagiarism. In fact, my research has revealed that Ohm never had an uncle, much less one that he witnessed die. Check your facts, Randall. Children read this comic.

But seriously, there is not all that much to say about this comic, it's a small little pun. I liked it, I can understand why you wouldn't. A variation I have seen before is "DragonForce = DragonMass * DragonAcceleration", so I guess this one also has been done before, sort of. Though it's not quite the same.

In good p#1 tradition, let us look at some of the eloquent grokings on the fora;

...well this is odd... people seem not to be taken by storm of the genius that is everything embodying Randall Munroe. Well, there is one post:

My side hertz from the burnt cheese. (note that this is in response to a link somebody posted, not the comic)

I honestly have nothing to add to this one. It's perfect in every imaginable way.
Okay. Let's talk about the alt text now:

"More generally, with great power comes great dEnergy/dt"

Well, that's the same pun with a different execution.

And with that, I leave you. For now.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Comic 642: Randall is...

Hey guys, It's me! P#1, doing the review! Again!

Creepy pretty much sums it up

I love Coupling (it's a british TV show for those of you who are unaware of what quality television is), it's a great show. I especially love Jeff (Oh, Jeffrey) he is definitely the best character, and I was very sad when he left the show in season 4. But wait, why am I telling you this? What does this have to do with xkcd?

Ask and ye shall receiveth

After watching this clip, you will notice that the joke is basically the same as in the xkcd (some of you might argue that it's not because this is about a kiss, and not an introduction, but that's a bullshit argument. The essence of the joke is the same)

Now, it's a reasonable assumption that Randall did not find coupling yesterday and decide to rip off one of the jokes, but that's not my point. If you watch that clip, you will notice that the joke is being presented much better in Coupling (later in the episode the girl, Julia, basically has the same fantasy but let's just disregard that).

Okay, structure. Both the comic and the clip start similar enough. We have an imagined scene, but are not aware that it is not in fact real. The scene shortly derails into the guy being severely punished by the girl and innocent bystanders. Then reality is shown. Pretty much the same, so let's ask ourselves "Why is the xkcd nowhere near as funny as the episode?"

Well, for one, stylistic problems. Text and stick figures is not equal to people talking. Not much that can be done about that (except maybe facial expressions, but you know xkcd...). Another problem is just that the idea of him imagining an extremely exaggerated negative reaction in itself is not that funny and has been done many times, what's funny to me is what Coupling makes out of it ("I only use my tongue for stamps and emergencies"), to Randy's credit, he does try to do this with the whole "Let's get his picture for facebook to warn others" thing, but it's just not doing it for me. The irony of her being actually interested and the dude missing his chance isn't really that funny (this is the case in coupling as well, as I've mentioned before, except that in coupling the girl also thinks it will have extreme negative consequences, which is in my point, a preferred alternative). I guess it's kind of a clever statement about self-confidence, but it's not really that funny. In fact, it's reality.

"Dear blog, Cute boy on train still ignoring me" doesn't sound like a blog entry at all, now that I think about it. It sounds like a tweet, but what kind of creepy person makes an entire blog entry dedicated to some random guy ignoring you on the train? Who actually says "Dear blog"? I guess that was just Randall trying to get the point accross that she is writing this to the internets. Also, "What.". What?

I really think this idea has potential, but you can't pass off the fact that she is interested in him and he thinks she's not and horrible things will happen if he talks to her off as the joke. That's not all that uncommon, and the exaggeration in itself does not make it funny.

Another problem with this is that it's yet another troubled romance comic. Let's see what I wrote about this trope in the xkcdsucks book

"This is a common one that has also been going on since the beginning of xkcd. The basic premise is this: A couple is pictured, interacting in some way. The punchline is that they have problems. It's funny because it's a universal truth."

Yep, pretty much. I guess the joke is that they are not interacting here, but you can not not communicate, so it remains valid.

Talking about the book; for those of you who haven't seen it, you can view the final version here:

Now, this book did not make it to randall in real life (unfortunately), but I did give it to him in IRC, and we talked about xkcd some more so overall I'm pretty happy with the resolution of the whole book-story.

I don't know if he read the book, but I did talk with him about a lot of the problems xkcd has. Once he stops being so busy I will remind him of the book, but if he reads it is out of our control.

But back to the comic (sort of);

Z-z-z-something from the forums (one bajillion points to whoever catches that reference):
This is what I am going through at this exact moment. My first "get out of my head, Randall!" moment. Hooray!

Listen, StrengthInFaith, this is not something special to be happy about. "I use forks to eat my food" "Get ouf of my _head_, P#1"

I've been told many times that women think this way (often by xkcd itself). But I'm still not sure it's not wishful thinking.

Think what way? You mean that they are physically attracted to some men? I would hope so. Or is he referring to the comic as a whole?

Well either way, Comic JK, it is not a good idea to turn to xkcd for dating advice. Unless you want your Quirky relationship to end in despair.

This may be the best xkcd I've ever seen. Oh, how true it is. In fact, it may even top #513.


Well okay. I am too bored to dig deeper into the thread. One more thing I noticed was that it's the thread makers (winning thread creation rights by seconds) birthday! Happy birthday! Good way to spend it!

Lastly, a commentary on the alt text:


irc channel moved

So, the op of #xkcd_sucks is apparently a five year old child who can't handle anyone disagreeing with him when he is being completely imbecillic. We have moved to #xkcd-sucks (still on foonetic), which is more aesthetically pleasing and doesn't have a lunatic op. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Comic 641: Laughter Free

FIRST OF ALL, which marketers are doing this? Sure, you'll see some foods that clearly should not have fat in them being marketed as fat-free, but that's because some foods do have fat. I recognize that using asbestos is clearly just an exaggeration, but I don't quite know what he's making fun of. This isn't some massive sudden trend in marketing, and to the extent that products say they are ___-free, they are usually things that one could reasonably expect to be there, some of the time.

The punchline is also poorly executed, and here's how you know: What is the punchline? Is it "asbestos-free"? If so, the text at the bottom is needless, and given that it has no humor content of its own. It just felt like wanted a caption for the sake of having a caption, and couldn't think of anything good. Maybe he should have combined it with the alt-text joke: Have one of the boxes labeled "Asbestos Free!" one labeled "Swine Flu Free!" and one with, I dunno, "Rat Brain Free!" and then the caption could be something about how it's just so hard to pick cereals these days, they all have so many advantages.

The fact that the cereal names themselves are as bland as their contents just shows how far we've come since Randall made up funny cereal name parodies [incidentally, of those six, I like the three on the right, because they are actually clever puns on existing cereals]. That is, I assume there are no jokes in the names - if I'm missing something do let me know.

OH HEY then there's another problem: SMBC did this joke way better. Two years ago. Here's
the link. Notice how it's better? How it uses the far funnier "skin from a dead hobo's mouth"? Yeah. SMBC is way better, in general. Why does Zach Weiner like xkcd so much? This is one of those eternal puzzles.


ALRIGHT. I'm taking off regular blogging for a week. Person #1, the editor of the xkcdsucks book, will take two days. I've instructed him to post the pdf of the book for you all to enjoy (It's been posted around before, but let's get it up in a post). Then Kirk will do the last day. Fun times! I will still be around, and I hope to write a post about all the new (non-book) stuff in the xkcd store.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Comic 640: The Thrill of the Hunt

Try Harder

Today is one of those mostly-positive-things-to-say comics. Because unlike most days, where Randall takes a dumb idea, fucks up the presentation beyond making sense, and vomits it up to his website, today Randall took a good idea, fucked it up, and vomited it to his site.

It is - or should be - a simple visual gag. You get the title "Tornado Hunters," you assume it means following them around with a video camera, you see them driving, you see them shooting, the end. Simple pun, executed (pun intended? i don't even know) visually, the end. Hell, it could appear the New Yorker.

Look at the third panel - ignore the crappier-than-usual art, and the sound effects. It's a funny image. It's all the talking before hand and the atrociously unneeded 4th panel (and the just terribly out of place, unrealistic line "I'm not sure we're doing this right") that ruins it.

SO - closer than usual today randall. Just - get an editor to tell you these things, and the two of you will make a great webcomic team.

OH ALSO one other problem - the alt text, "The Fujita Scale was replaced by the Enhanced Fujita Scale in 2007, but I think 'EF-5' sounds stupid, so I vote we just use the new measurements for assigning numbers but still call them 'F-whatever'." WHAT THE HELL. Way to just try to sound smart. I don't care if you don't really know about the F scale, you just read it on wikipedia, you end up just sounding like you are trying to show off by having opinions on stuff most people haven't heard of. And you KNOW most people haven't heard of it. I don't care if you pretend your audience is nerds, only a small number of nerds follow tornado classification shit. So shut up.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Comic 639: Juvenile tactics

Hey hey, it's a your mom joke! God, I haven't seen one of these guys in....years? Has it really been years? Man, this is making me nostalgic. Crack open a can of your-mom jokes, toss in some that's-what-she-saids, maybe pass around a bowl of "....-in-bed!"s. Have us a real good middle-school night.

And it's not even a good your-mom joke. The first thing that would come to my mind for a Lincoln's Mom comic would be "A house divided against itself cannot stand? More like...YOUR MOM cannot stand!" But this is just...dumb.

I know that some people will say that's the point, that's why he says Douglas's skills "entered a rapid decline." But that's a pretty cheap trick: Just because you say your joke is lame doesn't make the joke any less lame.

Also: referencing a really good webcomic, namely Kate Beaton's Hark: A Vagrant (known to all as simply "Kate Beaton" or "Kate Beaton's History Comics") doesn't make you seem any more cool. Ms. Beaton, for her part, made this twitter in response to the mention, she sounds real excited pretty annoyed about the whole thing.

Oh and fun fact randall, I know you said your joke is innaccurate but I would remiss if I did not point out that indeed its premise is also inaccurate; the Lincoln-Douglas debates were held in 1858 and were for Illinois's Senate election, an election which Douglas won, not lost. JUST SAYIN.

Heads up: Next week, as a reward for putting together the xkcdsucks book, Person #1 will be guest posting on Monday and Wednesday, and then Kirk will be doing it on Friday. I will leave it to P#1 to post a copy of the xkcdsucks book so you all can read it.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

XKCD BOOK PARTY: I came, I saw, I asked Randall Munroe about cocks

Here it is! Aloria's thrilling tale of being at the NYC party for the xkcd book. All your questions are answered....below!


The xkcd book party. You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy.

Alright, maybe not. To be honest, though, I walked into this party expecting to be surrounded by the worst kind of nerd stereotype. Keep in mind that I went to an engineering school with a whopping 19% female population. I've seen the dark, stalkerish side of that world, the cheesy Monty Python references side, the "I'm better than everyone because I understand MATH" side, and the "soap? bah. I am growing anthrax in my armpits" side. Taking into consideration that was a) a party to celebrate the release of an xkcd book b) a party advertised as "Hang out with Randall Munroe!" and c) taking place on "Talk Like a Pirate Day," I had my defenses up.

I left around 6:10 and made my way to the subway. Some dude in the station was playing the Super Mario Bros. theme song on steel drums. I dropped a dollar in his case and thought "OH GOD, IT'S ALREADY BEGUN."

Arriving at and gaining access to the party location was pretty unremarkable. My first stop was the bar, as I knew I would need some serious hooch to get me through the evening and also over that speedbump of social anxiety that seems to plague most every nerd. The party was eerily quiet as people sipped their first drink of the evening. I noticed a disproportionate number of wine drinkers; I had this pegged for a beer crowd but only saw about 4 people with bottles throughout the night. As people became more, erm, socially lubricated (ew!,) conversations started to flow, mostly related to what we all did for a living, what everyone thought of The Watchmen, and our surprise at how inexpensive tickets ended up being. Only a handful of people wore xkcd shirts, nobody showed up with a black hat, and with the exception of a goth girl decked out in petticoat and corset, the party looked more like a career networking event than a celebration of a book release.

Throughout all this, there was no sign of Randall. Surprisingly, nobody really seemed all that interested in meeting him. I spotted him about two hours into the party, as we got closer to what was vaguely referred as the "presentation." He quietly approached the snack table, loaded up on cheese and crackers, and left. He could have been any other person there. He was not mobbed by drooling fans; I doubt if anyone even batted an eye at his presence.


The evening ended with the "presentation"-- basically the event organizers telling us about Room to Read, Randall doing a little speech and a Q&A, and finishing with an auction. Readers will be comforted to know that NO, the school will NOT be named after xkcd, though there will be a plaque hung somewhere which mentions it. Randall repeated his opinion that it would be SUPER HILARIOUS to have kids work really hard on learning to read and then having no idea how to pronounce the name of their school. My eyes rolled so hard in my head that my eyelids began to cramp.

Randall's speech was run of the mill-- he'd always wanted to do a book, it was hard to do because he lost a lot of the originals, yadda yadda. He then revealed A GREAT TRUTH. You see, when Randall was a little kid, he liked to go down to the library to take out comic anthologies. Garfield anthologies. Yes, throughout the course of his childhood, Randall made a point to check out and read every Garfield book the library had to offer. There is nothing I can add to that revelation that would make it any more beautiful than it already is.

The Q&A started with some generic "quirky" questions that frankly, I don't remember, and don't feel like going back through my crappy video to transcribe. This is because, about three questions in, someone asked about the xkcdsucks blog.


Is there really any more I can say? I mean, I basically had my job done for me. I did get to ask a question, which was "So far to count you have drawn 2 pictures of below the waist and 1 above the waist female genitalia. Do you have any plans to show your female readers some love and draw some male genitalia?"

Randall's response: "I wanted to, but then they kicked me out of TGI Fridays!" Then he stood there, thinking intently, for a few moments. I got video of that, too.

A few more questions were asked, including "who is Megan?" (Randall claims the name is just a female name he picked and not of anyone real,) and then the auction began. The top two bidders each won a one-on-one lunch with Randall, at $375 and $350 each, respectively. I put in a bid somewhere around the $200 mark thinking it would be cute to do an xkcdsucks interview, but was not willing to fork out more than that, even for epic lulz.

The second auction was for a commissioned drawing by Randall, which ended up going for $700. Now, the winner can have Randall draw anything he wants, but the fact that someone was willing to pay that much for work by an artist whose specialty is stick figures... well, I'm sure you guys will have a great time with the snark potential therein.

With all that out of the way, we were left to collect our choice of free tshirts (Mine: "Stand back! I know regular expressions,") prints ("sudo make me a sandwich,") and xkcd books. They ran out of pre-signed books about halfway through, leaving the other 30 or so of us to stand in a line to get Randall to sign our copies. I thought I'd wait, thinking this would be a good opportunity to give him the hilarious book you guys put together. However, after standing there for about a half hour, the line hadn't moved. Randall was still chatting with the event organizers. On top of that, one of the dudes standing in line with me smelled like he hadn't mastered the concept of toilet paper. Luckily, I found a friendly waiter who agreed to take my parcel and deliver it to Randall. Whether it made it to him, was accepted, or was read will remain a mystery. However, I think I got my money's worth.

A thousands thanks to Aloria for doing all this. I think the conclusion to the story with our book (which will be put on the blog in finalized form soon) is rather fitting and nice; Aloria tried to get it to him but we don't even know if it worked. Hopefully those of you who had worried about this operation/ thought we shouldn't do it are ok with how things turned out. Certainly aloria didn't embarrass him, and if thinking about this site ruined his day, it was because of that other guy who asked about us, not Aloria. So I think we are pretty good.

Comic 638: No Signs Of Intelligence

search for originality, more like
Another short post today, because later tonight I will post the exciting post-book-party report that Aloria just sent me! I haven't even read it yet. From what I've heard on IRC, some seriously awesome stuff happened. But who knows!

Anyway, ants. Ants not knowing about humans as analogy for humans not knowing about aliens. Basically all I think about it is that the idea is super old, tons of people have suggested that they would be using frequencies far beyond the range in which we are searching, or they are physically much larger or smaller than us and so their messages pass us by unnoticed, etc. There's also the story cited in this forum post, which says "It's reminiscent of an Arthur C. Clarke story in which astronomers spot some stars that are just jumping around for no reason. They're forced to conclude that there is intelligent life out there--and that it's much, much more advanced than us."

There's also the old line (which might be from Douglass Adams? Or Terry Pratchett? is apparently from Calvin and Hobbes) that the surest sign that other life in the universe is intelligent is that it has not tried to contact us.

That's all. Old idea, perhaps cleverly stated, but then again, given the response you could give the ants ("what about all those carefully placed traps, evenly spaced, and right by where all your entrances to the kitchen are?") maybe not.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Comic 637: Scribbles

scribble scribble
shiiiiiiiit i am like 5 hours late with this. I got so caught up in the xkcd book / xkcdsucks book drama that I forgot there were comics to critique. On that: I've come around to the idea that the best idea would be to write the book, of course, but it would be more fun to not give it to him. Surely if Randall hasn't been tipped off by now to our plan, some xkcd fan in attendance will have, and we can just pull a wacky non-rickroll type thing and just let him anticipate something that doesn't happen. THAT IS MY OFFICIAL STANCE even though it goes directly against what i wrote in my introduction to the book. i changed my mind. THE END.

ANYWAY comic 637, scribblewhatever. Obviously, I had no idea what was going on. Neither did you. That's because the nintendo DS game "scribblenauts" only came out the day this comic did. So I don't know who was supposed to get this joke. So I was confused and was like, "well i guess I will have to go to the forums on this one, better take some anti-douchebag spray so i don't get an allergic reaction like last time."

But anyway, then I actually, against all odds, played the game Scribblenauts in between then and now, so now I know exactly what is happening in this comic.

And it sucks. Surprise!

The idea, if you haven't learned it by now, is that the game is based off of this magic notepad, and you can type in most any common noun and then that object will appear there, and you can use it to solve the various puzzles the game presents. Most of the joy of the game - which I had a lot of fun with - is in coming up with crazy nouns and seeing if they are in the game's programming. Cthulu is there, for example, and Godzilla, though lolcat was not. "lol wut" apparently makes your character's head really big. Anyway, that's the point of the game.

So what's happening in this comic is that the girl is playing, she's being amused by what's in the game (as one would be in real life) and then the other guy is like "whatever" and then apparently the game already has "asshole" in there and it looks like him! ha ha. Except, we don't know that the "pretentious asshole" looks like him because we don't actually see what pops up, we are just assured that it must be him. We also get the awkwardness of seeing the girl twice in one panel. There's really no good reason for that. I know that a comic doesn't have to have one panel correspond to one image, one moment in time in a story, but that's at least how xkcd does it basically all the time. So that's weird.

Also is it really that pretentious to say the game is OK for a kid's game? I mean, there's a hell of a lot more pretentious thing you can say about a game. Maybe he just didn't like it. There isn't much in the way of tone that we can figure out from this guy - some comics might feature facial expressions for such a thing, but not xkcd. So that's a little jarring, I guess, to suddenly be told that finding something nice to say about a game - which is a kid's game, ok, just cause it's fun doesn't make that not the case, I mean Toy Story was a kid's movie but we all like it anyway - is assholeish.

Anyway. Making a comic about a game like that, one that just came out and who knows how popular it will get, if at all, or when, if ever, is just like the Ender's Game comic the other day - way too much of a niche, even for a comic that's already in the "nerd" niche.

OK - now, back to the drama over the book!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Help write the xkcdsucks book

Because hell, if Randall can write a book, so can we. It's called, obviously, "xkcdsucks: volume 0" and we want to have it done in time to let Aloria print it out and give it to Randall at the NYC book release party. Of course, the party is on Saturday so we need stuff fast.

If you want to contribute a page, send a 1 page pdf, standard A4 / 8.5*11 size, to Person #1 at [REDACTED] and do it by FRIDAY. so like, two days from now.

What should you write about? Anything in the greater xkcdsucks world. You can write about this blog, or about what element of xkcd annoys you most (the forums? the wiki vandalism? the crappy art? the irritating blog?) You can just write an essay, or do it as your own comic, or edit some other comics, or anything, really. Be creative.

But - don't just make it "FUCK YOU RANDALL how come you can't be funny like cyanide and happiness oh it's because you suck" or something like that. We are trying to get him to actually read it, so think about that as you write.

After it's all done we'll get an account from Aloria about what the party was like and whether our work made it to him or not, and of course, we'll make the pdf available for you to all read.

PS Poore can you write a page with all your favorite drinks on it? Including one called "an xkcdsucks"?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Comic 636: Our love is like an analogy

I don't think there is a lot to say today. We have another one of Randall's patented "All relationships turn to total sadness and heartbreak" comics, which were pissing me off last summer and are pissing me off now. Some people think the analogy is funny anyway; I say, you can make any anology funny as long as you are dictating the terms of that analogy. In other words, if he had said love was like a T-Rex, full of angry energy, constant biting (sorry guys, i had to write that) and featured on a popular webcomic, that also would have worked, because the only thing we have to base their relationship on is the very analogy that he gave us. It's the same sort of reverse-engineered cheating I complained about in comic 575.

i'll give points to the alt-text for being funny despite that, though the humor of the alt-text only reinforces the mediocrity of the rest of it.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Comic 635: under locke and key

read the book for good times
Hey hey look, it's a comic just for people who read the book Ender's Game! If you didn't read it, fuck off. This comic isn't for you. But you should read it, it's good. As I'm sure you know.

Randall doesn't make these sorts of comics that often, to be fair, but there have been those exceptions. They're like any other reference comic, I suppose, but it's a dangerous trap to fall into. They significantly cut down on the percentage of your audience who will be entertained. And before you all go "Oh come ON everyone has read ender's game" or "well anyone who is an xkcd fan has read it" let me just assure you that that is completely not true. Plenty of total nerds haven't read it. OK? I know nerds who haven't even seen Star Wars. Crazy, I know, but it's true.

Anyway, I have read Ender's Game, so luckily I'm in a good position to complain about this comic.

The joke, as far as I can tell, is that in real life, Peter's plan to get famous would fail and no one would read his blog. Ok. It took me a while though - the way it's set up, it looks like the joke is just that the plan he has is basically the same as blogging, and seeing the wordpress page with all his posts is sort of the visual punchline. But that's not funny; it's just saying "HEY WHAT PETER 'N' VALENTINE ARE DOING IS BASICALLY BLOGGING" which doesn't make Randall funny so much as make Orson Scott Card rather prescient.

OK but the joke is that no one would care. That's fine, I guess, but the whole point of that plot of the book is that they are very very good writers, not just the usual idiots out there spouting off about 9/11 truthism and Obama birthism and all the other completely hilaious conspiracy theories we are seeing these days. Is it still unlikely that Peter and Valentine's plan would work? Sure. But it's unlikely that a young kid would go to a place called Battle School, beat all the other kids in the combat room, and go on to (SPOILER ALERT) do all that stuff he does. It's a book. More specifically, it's a science fiction book. It's not supposed to be what would happen in all of our ordinary lives. Furthermore, I'd like to quote Kirk's very good comment on a related matter:

Anyway, the adding of fivethirtyeight in the corner of the screen sorta defeats the observation Randall is making. Fivethirtyeight is a political blog that was so popular that it pushed its creator into mainstream popularity (he is a constant commenter on MSNBC, along with other media appearances). The point learned from fivethirtyeight is that if you are able to provide a unique product, you will gain notoriety even amongst a sea of competitors.
And the fact that I am quoting Kirk means that he too is gaining fame for pointing out a smart thing.

Anyway, the only other thing I have to say is that in light of the fact that Randall is The God Of Reddit, that Reddit is publishing his book, and the ongoing "ask randall the questions that get the most reddit votes" thread, the alt-text - "Dear Peter Wiggin: This letter is to inform you that you have received enough upvotes on your reddit comments to become president of the world..." - strikes me as a little self-serving and a lot fan-servicey.


By the way, if you haven't gone through that reddit thread to make sure Randall actually gets hard questions in his interview, (as opposed to say, the current #3 question "Who is the most famous person who is a fan of xkcd?"), well what the fuck are you waiting for, man, go do it.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Well it is about time. Or, to be more accurate, it is 87 days past time. No matter. The xkcd blog brings us news that they are finally about to release the xkcd book. Actually other than that there is no news; we knew it would have, as Randy writes, "strips chosen by me from the first 600 xkcd comics," along with various other little notes and things. That was all in the NYTimes article about this whole mess that we have known about for months.

Now here's what actually interests me - which comics is he going to pick? As I see it, he can hew mostly to the first 350 or so, and come up with a good book, or he can choose ones more evenly spread out (or, god forbid, have mostly later ones), and have a crappy book. The problem is that if he goes for the former, it's basically admitting that there aren't as many good comics later on, ie, the comic is getting worse. So I don't think he'll go that route - because I know that Randall doesn't think his comic is getting worse.


So there are also going to be some release parties (In New York and California, the only states that matter) for the book, which will in part raise money for some good causes. But that's actually where things get a little weird.

The goal of the fundraising is to build a school in Laos. Good. I'm all for that. The school will be called "xkcd". Uhhhh....I'd like to say I'm kidding but the way they phrase it is:

The goal is to raise at least $30,000 to build a school named after xkcd in Laos. (Yes, the poor kids in Laos will have to pronounce that.)
As in, they are trying to make a joke, but it's about pronouncing the school's name, not the fact that they are doing this at all.

Luckily, they are not being idiots about the way they sell tickets.

Though by the way - if any of you are going to be at any of these events, please do send me an e-mail about it. I want to have a secret source on the inside!

God, the whole site is full of shit like "HANG OUT WITH RANDALL!" and "You’ll not only get a chance to meet and chat with Randall, but blah blah blah" those are actual quotes. talk about a cult of personality. christ.


As Randy's blog post makes clear, there will be at some point some kind of interview thing, where they ask him the questions that are most popular on reddit. There's a whole reddit channel (is that what they are called? god I am so old) for this.

Guys. We have to influence that. I for one started my own reddit account just for this. You all should totally upvote my question, but go through the whole list of them, and vote for the ones that are way more challenging ("Are you aware that you have a very apparent need to tell people you're getting laid?") as opposed to the fucking idiotic ("Of all things on the internet that you influenced, which one that you're most proud of?").

1500 of you read this blog every day. We can do this.


I guess this means that my "the xkcd book is ___ days overdue" clock can come down. Thanks again to John for making it; I am quite certain that its existence is what forced Randall &co to finally publish this book, even though they said it would be out in "mid june." I'll miss you, clock.

update: Oh god, it looks like the page numbers for the book are in binary. oh, fuck that.

Comic 634: We Made More Than One

Fun times at xkcdsucks world headquarters: Today's guest poster, whom I will call "Captain Tacos" because he did not specify a pseudonym, sent me not one but two reviews of this comic. They can easily be called the "normal" review and the "wacky" review. I've pasted the normal one below; to read the wacky one click here.

I'm more than happy to skip writing about this particular comic; I thought it was beyond bland and utterly forgettable. So instead I will encourage you to give it up for CAPTAIN TACOS:


" (For shorter form, read only first line.)

... .... ... meh.

And let me explain, by 'meh' I do not mean this is a mediocre comic that is neither funny nor interesting. By 'meh' I mean this is a terrible comic that is neither funny nor interesting. My roommate and I had a long argument about this. He notes that this comic has no major flaws; his criticisms are that "made more than two" is awkward and should be "had more than two" and that the title, "Date" slightly gives away the joke. The premise is contrived and doesn't lead anywhere, Combined with the lackluster punchline, he calls this a mediocre comic. I disagree; I argue that the absence of humor constitutes a huge, crippling, if you will, fatal flaw. When did 'not good, but with the absence of vaginas,' become mediocre. Probably last week, when there was a giant vagina in the comic! Perhaps this was the point of that comic, to so lower the bar that all future comics would be judged more kindly because they were not so blatantly pornographic. (This principle was at work in Carl's analysis of 632)

Often, an XKCD strip will have a decent idea with the potential for some LOLs, and then Randall will fuck it up. Our service will be to explain how he fucked up, and make fun of him for it, and occasionally fix it. But here, there's nothing to fix, and nothing really to make fun of. Its the carbon ash of a comic: it has no potential energy for anything, but is in a completely stable, useless form. But each strip starts with the promise of funny. The very fact that a strip was made and proffered to us, the public, implies that there is some good in it. Presumably if it started with the promise of carbon ash, it would not be proffered. But, as has been noted elsewhere in this blog, the goal of a webcomic is comedy; when a strip does not meet that goal it has failed. Failure is not mediocre! Failure is bad!"

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Comic 633: xkcd raped my childhood

is it time to write about xkcd again? man, these deadlines happen to fast. luckily i have a guest person for tomorrow, I am pretty sure.

Blockbuster Shitting, was that really what this comic was called???

Ugh, that's some gross layout you've got there. We'll get to that.

First, to content: Ha, guys, people are making movies of kids' books, and they usually suck! What I love about xkcd is that Randall (or am I supposed to call him Mr. Munroe now?) always manages to make fun of things that are totally true and obvious, yet which no one is making jokes about already!

For example, Penny Arcade. People say those guys are funny, but they've never made comics about action-packed versions of childhood staples which only barely cling to their source material! Not once! Thanks to Maleloth for pointing that penny arcade could never do this.

Or heck, here's another example: What xkcd is pointing out here is that crappy hollywood blockbuster directors are basically taking elements of your childhood and violently assaulting them, which is, again, not something anyone's ever commented on.

You'd also think that with such obvious wit and insight, xkcd might have noticed this whole "innocent children's book is turned into violent movie" craze and comment on it, but NO! again! NO! this joke is refreshingly orignal!

Harriet the Spy is not only totally a girls' book, but was already made into a movie. If the joke is supposed to be taking an actual phenomenon (books --> movies) and exaggerate it (as per usual comedy practice) he should have chosen something that is actually, you know, exaggerated. As in, something that would never in 10,000 years be made into a movie. Or at least something that is unlikely to be. Not something that already is a movie. That just confuses things.

Now for the layout. Gah, this is terrible. Way below his usual standards. Look at it - we have just shitloads of white space there. Serving no purpose, making it feel all unbalanced and weird. Makes it look like the page is failing to load.

so at the very, very least, center that top panel:

fill me with glorySo much better. But still not great - you still have a lot of white space. It also gives equal emphasis to the "title" panel, the one at the end, as it does to the scenes from the movie. I think that last panel should get more emphasis, have a heavier finality to it, so it feels a little more like the end of a movie trailer (or, alternatively, looks more like a movie poster, depending on what you think he should be emulating). So I threw this together - sorry for the blur on the panels I had to enlarge, but that's how it goes. Just rough, proportions aren't quite right or anything, just to give you an idea of what I mean:

way coolEH? isn't it better? Of course it is.

Randall: If you let me be your editor I swear I will be nice about it, and just work to make xkcd a better comic for everyone. If not me, please hire someone to edit these, you need it.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Comic 632: Positive Reinforcement

Suspiciously NOT CRAPPY
I'm going to be really nice today. Sure, this comic isn't brilliant and didn't make me laugh, but the more I think about it, the more I think, God, Randy could have made this so much worse. I mean, yeah, he's had plenty of comics about robots acting like people, and hell, even captcha humor, but look: He had a guy in a relationship with a computer, and yet, didn't make them talk explicitly and awkwardly about having sex!

Wait, why did they have to get tested together? Why couldn't he just send her a captcha image and ask her what it said? Oh right, so it would make you think they were talking about STDs. Well. Whatever. You know what's important though, really, about this comic?

NO CARTOON VAGINAS. so i think we are all winners in that sense.

other notes:

--He changed the description of the new tie on his store site! Good news: He spelled "characters" correctly this time. Bad news: He encourages people to wear his tie and his tie alone to work. Oh randy. you want everyone to just be naked, don't you?

--Raddest Dude Ever, ch00f, sends me a site that is basically some well known xkcd comics with the women erased. It works.

--Lastly, did we all see the new SMBC Theater? I see that (spoiler alert!) mr. Zach Weiner is wearing an xkcd shirt in it. That is to say, his character, who wants to show up in random places and have sex with anyone he can find, is wearing an xkcd shirt. Ahhhh.......

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Comic 631: William Monty Hughes "Weighs" In (at 224...pounds!)

Readers! I bring good news. It appears that the violent uproar of internet anger over comic 631 is indeed so great that we have yet another guest post about it! So that makes 4 total posts on this comic: Mine, Jay's, Rob's, and the following, coming from my mortal enemy, William Monty Hughes.

Stop! I know what you are thinking. "Give in and publish the most vile dreck imaginable? Allow Willy Huge's libels and horrid distortions to appear on this, the third most popular anti-xkcd blog in the entire domain? Surely you cannot be serious!"

Never fear! I have received word that Willy Huge was, like us, outraged by this comic, and felt the need to recant everything he has ever written, in one fell swoop of bloggeteering. I myself have not actually read the post in question, but I know that even William must have terrible things to say about comic 631. Right? His post is copy and pasted, starting now:


I am William Monty Hughes, and it is extremely likely that I am faster, stronger and more intelligent than the person reading this sentence (that would be you).

I am only posting on this Beelzeblag to provide a necessary unbiased and contrary opinion (mine). I am disrupting the perpetual circle-jerk that is the community, and for this I am proud. Perhaps I can even redeem some of their most volatile members with my rhetorical skill.

My thoughts on the recent "Xkcd":

The most recent "Xkcd" is already easily one of my all-time favourites. Do you want to know why, humble reader? It is simple, but since you are probably a complete and utter moron (I know the first person other than me to read this certainly is, Wheeler) I shall have to beat the point into your microscopic, nihilistic brain.

Today's strip made me laugh, think and also gave me a GIGANTIC erection (thank you, Mr. Munroe). An extremely rare occurrence for an online comic, even this one (please forgive me if I am being rude). This would be the first I have seen to tackle all three aspects.

Since I have a perfect, photographic memory (Yes, I'm eidectic, how surprising), I shall relay to you my exact first reactions to the recent strip.

I am waiting. In several minutes a masterpiece shall be uploaded to the inter-net, for the masses to behold.

It is time. I refresh once more.


It's not there! It's not there! I focus my rage into a roar, and SCREAM into the Heavens!

"Why? Why?!"

An eternity passes. It should be there. Why isn't it there?!

I futiley refresh a final time... But DISASTER strikes once more! My personal computer FREEZES. It REFUSES to load!

In one, fleeting moment of tremendous rage, I CURSE Randall Munroe himself.

I erred, and I apologize. I realized my grave mistake the instant those blasphemous words -my words- charged forth from my tongue, in my voice but not of my soul.

I was about to punish myself as, remarkably, my personal computer returned to normality. had loaded, and what did I find on my blessed monitor?

A comic strip. A NEW comic strip. Oh, frabjous day!

I read "female breast", and my mind exploded, blood instinctively RUSHED to my perfect penis. I predicted this was going to be an excellent strip (more evidence for the case of me being an oracle) and so felt I must savour it, as I knew that this would be the only time, EVER, in the history of the entire multi-universal spectrum, that William Monty Hughes (IQ 224) saw this particular "Xkcd" strip for the first, and possibly most fulfilling time.

I looked below the caption, and saw a wonderfully drawn breast. Exactly like the ones on Google Images! I must once again commend Randall for his realistic artistic talent.

I also saw the labels, and I must say, they were extremely informative. "Xkcd" teaches and entertains simultaneously!

Panel 1 had finished. The comic was 1/4, 0.25 or 25% complete.

I started Panel 2. I had thought that nothing could supercede Panel 1! I was wrong. So very wrong. A perfectly renditioned human female vagina/anus is indeed vastly superior to a perfectly renditioned human female breast. The only point of improvement would be the rude and intrusive "hey!" dialogue bubble. How inconvenient! I rushed Panel 2 in hopes of there being another vagina (or perhaps something EVEN more erotic) in panel 3, only completely devoid of speech. I wish I had not.

Panel 2 had finished. The comic was 1/2, 0.5 or 50% complete.

I began reading Panel 3, and I am ashamed to admit it, but I was disappointed. It was MUCH less "sexy" than Panel 2. *Sigh*

"External male genitalia". Oh dear. I am a very heterosexual male and I do not approve of this at all.

Ah, false alarm. Wonderful subversion of my expectations! I am glad I did not have to see a male reproductive organ other than my own.

"Shit". Hmm, oh dear, a character is either referring to feces or something negative has occurred.

"What the hell? You can't do that in here!"

What are they doing?! Tell me now! I must know! I am sure it is hilarious AND imaginative! What is the correlation between this and Panels 1 and 2?!

"Megan, get off the table!". Ah, the pretty lady is "Megan". Panels 1 and 2 were taken while she was lying on a table, naked. Of course!

I wish I was intimate with Megan! Is this specific strip based on a true story, Randall? I hope so (my reasoning shall become apparent later).

This is the point when my human male penis had become fully erect.

"Grab the tripod!" What tripod? Is that a euphemism? Or is he being literal?! I could not wait to find out the secret to my enquiries!

Panel 3 had finished. The comic was 3/4, 0.75 or 75% complete. A true shame.

"Erect penis". I was half-expecting to see a photo of my own as this panel. How amusing if that had been true, if slightly embarrassing, and not as HILARIOUS as the original comic.

"We're calling the cops". Oh dear, run Megan, run!!!

"Run!" I have a spiritual bond with this character, that goes beyond our similarity of character. Could we be... Heterosexual soul-mates? This could prove tiresome as that character is a fictional stick-figure.

"TGI Friday's is a family establishment!". TGI Friday's has spurned me in the past, so the prospect of this actually occurring amuses me. In fact, I hope it does, over-weight, rude red-haired, teenage employee! Take that!

At this point, the joke had become so very clear to me, and I burst out laughing for several long and extremely pleasurable minutes, before ceasing.

I have reviewed responses from the fora, and I fail to see the reason why some consider the nudity to be a problem.

Heterosexual males should enjoy the nudity. Homosexual females should enjoy the nudity. Heterosexual females should not care.

Homosexual males... Perhaps. Does this mean that Roberto, James and Carl Wheeler are all gay? For each other? I refuse to comment further.

The answer is yes, they are.

In conclusion, this comic is flawless and, if I was the President of the United States of America, I would pass a law to send all "Xkcd" detractors to insane asylums.

For those who would speak ill of "Xkcd's" esteemed creator:

I insulted Lord Munroe, and he had the compassion to not withhold the strip from me, as he should have. This speaks wonders of the vastness of the man's infinite capability for compassion.

Randall, I forgive you. I always have and always shall. I only hope that you can one day forgive me.

-William Monty Hughes

IQ 224

"Cogito Ergo Sum"

P.S: I know how you all seem to masturbate to acronyms (one of the key signs of a weak mind), so I've provided you with some material, I hope it fails to disappoint:


Or "please do not leave my head. Please stay for as long as you desire, until doing so becomes impractical or inefficient".

P.P.S: As some of you may or may not know, I have recently been SHUNNED and INSULTED by the TvTropes "Xkcd" fora community. Probably on account of their immense jealousy for my intellect, prose and achievements. Though why they claim to "enjoy" "Xkcd", I cannot fathom. If they are deeply envious of me (to the point of spite), then why not of Munroe? Whose accomplishments and mental acuity far surpass my own.

They are essentially you (back-water public-schooled mutants), only on the opposite polarity in regards to "Xkcd".

I would appreciate it if you were to join Rupert Lostman's war campaign against them. This will weaken both of your sides, which is beneficial to me as I loathe you both (this is an old war tactic, to manipulate your enemies against each other).

This is the fora thread for "Xkcd":

My first post on the TvTropes fora (my handle is "MathStar", identical to the one I use on the "Xkcd" fora):

Sickening Sychopantic (this is a technique that I am utilising known by many names, most prominently known as "alliteration") Carl "Ugly" Wheeler worship is rampant and Rupert Lostman's trademarked retardation is scattered amidst the pages, completely ruining the thread and all potential quality it may have held.

P.P.P.S: I have recently stumbled upon the "Dominic Deegan" thread in the "Giant in the Playground Fora".

It is almost exactly like THIS cultist community. Probably because your motive for hating this comic is EXACTLY THE SAME as that of the Dominic-Deegan-Detractors. Envy.

For a great comic and its even greater creator.

You both:

1. Nitpick over minor details that are not even errors.

2. Complaining about delusions of "stilted" or "unnatural" dialogue.

3. Do not understand that "bad art" is simply a stylistic choice.

4. Have no sense of humour.

5. Have abysmal spelling and grammar.

6. Complain about "one-dimensional characters" when they are, in actuality, well-rounded realistic people with complex personalities.


You even share a member: Frogwarrior.

Farewell, may the vast majority of the people who read this PERISH soon, and painfully. Without honour. A karmic death. You are all despicable proto-human beings. This is not a subjective opinion, but an objective fact.

If you wish to learn more of the great myself (William Monty Hughes) (I am most definitely NOT surprised) I have a twatter and also an electronic mail postage address

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Comic 631: what the FUCK???

Good evening. welcome to the blog, those of you who are new. I know it's a tough day to be a reader of xkcd. Pull up a chair, why don't you? You may be here for a long time. I know I certainly have a lot to say today. Jay even got so upset that he went and wrote his own post about this comic! Why, even cranky old Rob came out of his shell and wrote a post. Emotions, it would seem, are running high. Let's talk, no?

gross oh oh god gross ew no no no no no gross make it stop make it stop UGH no one wants to LOOK AT THAT, god, christ lord NO ONE WANTS TO SEE THAT! ugh gross, no, ew.

OH. HOLY. CRAP. OH WHAT THE FUCK. WHAT THE FUCK, RANDALL? what is this supposed to be? Seriously, tell me what it is supposed to be. I don't have a fucking clue.

No? You aren't going to say anything? Well that sucks, because I'll tell you what the fuck this comic looks like to me.

It looks like the little story you are trying to tell is this.

Man (let's call him "Randy") and woman (conveniently labeled "Megan") walk into a restaurant.. They take off their clothes. They take pictures of themselves and label the various interesting parts of themselves that they see. They are asked to leave the restaurant.

Is that the story you are trying to tell, Randall? Because if so, YOU SUCK IN EVERY POSSIBLE WAY.

For one thing, EW GROSS. when we want to look at pictures of naked people, we have other websites for that. Your website is for giving us humor, or in my case, seething hatred. NOT NAKED PEOPLE. to repeat: WE HAVE ALREADY GOT GOOD SOURCES ON NAKED PEOPLE please do not feel the need to join them!

Now I know a lot of people are saying that I (and those like me) only object to this comic because of the GRAPHIC NUDITY. We are prudish medieval types who do not like to be reminded that people are naked sometimes. So let me reiterate: I don't object to graphic nudity. I object to it being in my webcomics. xkcd has a prissy disclaimer at the bottom, talking about how it sometimes has "strong language (which may be unsuitable for children)." Maybe it's time he adapts that to include the phrase "...and VAGINAS, which may be unsuitable for anyone NOT EXPECTING TO SEE VAGINAS AT THIS PARTICULAR MOMENT IN TIME."

the loud objecting to UP CLOSE VAGINAS may, unfortunately, distract people from the other terrible problems with this comic, such as, to chose one particular flaw, it makes no fucking sense.

Why the hell are these people taking such pictures in such a place? If you are going to have them be at a restaurant and tell us that they are there, we need a reason. Doesn't have to be perfect - maybe the lighting is just right there, maybe they want to make little food versions of their vaginas, maybe they just want to scare little kids or get revenge on a waiter - the point is, all we have now are two people gettin' crazy at a Friday's and that to me just suggests: Complete and horrible psychosis.

The alt-text ("For many of the anatomy pictures on Wikipedia, I think this is actually not far from reality. They only look all formal and professional due to careful cropping.") makes me wonder if the joke is supposed to be making fun of explicit photos on wikipedia, and their low quality. Maybe? The only little problem with that is: Making jokes about crappy porn will only entertain people very familiar with said porn (ie, creepy losers) and means that if you've spent enough time looking at those pictures, why, look at that! You are the king of the creepy losers!


Randall Munroe, you must understand, is an artist. He must be, otherwise his graphic depictions of sex would basically be pornography, not art. And while he certainly visits the pornographic haven that is 4chan on a regular basis, surely he as a human is far above that level. Far above.

And you see, as an artist, Randall has to make artistic choices. So for example, whereas a lowly plebian like you or me would just draw some silly panels showing what happened in the story, Randall presents us with the finished product of our two heroes' adventure. They are creating illustrations, you see, of human anatomy, for a text of some kind. That is why they are so clearly labelled and numbered!

But there is more to it.

Because Randall Munroe, you must understand, is an idiot. He must be, otherwise his slides wouldn't fucking have speech bubbles on them. Also he wouldn't draw such a detailed fucking girl only to zoom out oh-so-slightly and have her revert to stick-figure-ness. Look: You can draw stick figures if you want, but don't expect us to believe that they are anatomically correct. They're stick figures! christ.

Also where, exactly, are these "plates" being shown? In a book? On an overhead projector? I know it seems trivial but I ask because why would they include plates 17 and 18, which are clearly not what they are labeled as (because Randall is not quite comfortable enough in his heterosexuality to draw male anatomy, just yet, though to be fair he is willing to talk about it an awful lot) and of course, there is the question of why these photographs have speech bubbles on them. Isn't that a good question? I wish I could take a picture of someone talking and have their words come out on the camera, but I cannot.

Hey HERE'S ANOTHER QUESTION: who took the picture in the last panel, and why?

why oh why did they want to do this in a restaurant?

Who's got class? The dude who posted a blog post about urinals the same day he gave us this piece of shit comic! woooo! ps all your urinal-theorizing is OLD JOKES. very old.

Lastly, there is one last little detail about this comic that I am sure most astute readers of the blog noticed instantly: Our good friend Megan has returned.

Megan, for those of you who do not know, is the generic girl in xkcd. She is often singled out by name. For a while she was just breaking up with Randall, then he started stalking her, so that was weird, and now we've got him drawing lots of GRAPHICALLY NUDE pictures of her on the internet. Why? Oh lord, why? I don't care if Megan is real or not (ok that's not true, I hope to god she is not real) but when Randall keeps using the same name all the danged time it feels creepy anyway. It feels like "I have not gotten over this girl so I will obsess about it inappropriately on the internet." To avoid it, there are two steps you can take: Use different names each time, or stop being SO GOD FUCKING DAMN INAPPROPRIATE. Hm? HM?

Christ this comic is just so horrible in so many ways. Can people please, please please realize that xkcd is terrible now? Please? let's just end this collective nonsense and spend time with things that make sense and are funny, and most importantly, DO NOT INVOLVE A SINGLE CARTOON VAGINA.

is it so much to ask?

fun facts: this post had 175 comments before I even updated the placeholder with actual content. Also, 6000 people visited this blog today. DAMN! this comic seriously started the shitmost of shitstorms

Comic 631: the fuck?

[Jay could not wait for my rant, so he wrote his own. that is what is happening here.]

Hey, does the new comic seem weird to any of you? I can't quite put my finger on it.

Is it the font? No, that's not it...

The panels are gray? Still no...

Think one of you could help me out here?


Oh right, it's the fucking breasts and vagina. OK then.

Obviously the breasts are in panel one. I can tell from the comments that I'm not the only one perturbed by them. I am male and straight and generally OK with breasts, but I was not expecting them, and honestly, I don't enjoy having them staring at me over my morning coffee. And they're such detailed breasts, like - almost like they don't belong to a stick figure at all...

In panel two we have the vagina! Thanks Randall, by the way, for labeling it so we know what it is. We have seen vaginas in xkcd before, actually, but this one is larger and harder to ignore. I guess we do have that speech bubble covering it, but you know what, it still makes me uncomfortable.

Look, I feel - I feel like for some reason I have to justify my dislike for this comic, like it makes me some fucking prude who thinks ugh vaginas too indecent to show on the internet. I'm not. There's nothing wrong with nudity. If I'd seen this in Sexy Losers I wouldn't bat an eye. That's not my problem here. My problem is that this comic is drawn by Randall fucking Munroe, the guy who once drew this, and until recently this comic would have been very out of character for him. It's shocking because it's xkcd.

I guess I'm supposed to like, summarize this for you or something, but fuck it. You can see what's going on. And it's weird. It's really weird, and fuck everyone who says it isn't. It's weird that when, for the first time in like 300 comics, Randall draws a non-stick figure, it's basically porn. It's weird that he spends enough time looking at nude photos on wikipedia to notice trends (I stole that one from the forums.) And is it just me or is the gray color he chose completely hideous? Like the breasts are dead. Dead breasts.

Aside from the obvious (the breasts and vagina - just making sure you hadn't forgotten them since I mentioned them one sentence ago), this comic sucks. It's not funny. It's not. This cheese is not burning me. It's not funny because it doesn't make sense. WHY THE FUCK are they doing this in a TGI Friday's? Are there customers there? Why not do it in their home? The whole situation is contrived. And speech doesn't show up in photos.

Ugh, what else.

My eyes keep returning to those fucking breasts.

Not sure why they bother me more than the vagina.

Oh yeah, there's Megan! Hello Megan! Again! I have already registered my thoughts on this subject, that Randall is fucking with us, because honestly c'mon. I know he avoids criticism but he must be aware of the jokes, right? I've seen them other places besides here. Rape Guy is going to have a field day with this over at xkcdcouldbebetter. Speaking of which, WAYS THIS COMIC COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER:

* He could have not drawn it.
* He could have not uploaded it.
* He could have drawn the first two panels as stick figures. It would have been funny because stick figures do not have genitals.
* He could have made the guy's dialogue less awkward in the last panel. He wouldn't say the restaurant's name, he'd say "this is a family establishment." And then Randall could have drawn a TGI Friday's sign. Picture it in your head - don't you think this version would have been funnier? And more natural?

Whatever. I don't know what the fuck went through Randall's head. "Gosh, do I ever have a hankering to draw some external female genitalia! No one will mind! It's not like they'll be viewing this at work or anything!"

You're losing it, Randall.

And to the people on the forums who were like, "you shouldn't have been slacking off at work anyway!" - you can piss off. That's a petty argument and you know it. Most offices are OK with someone taking a short break to browse the internet to look at appropriate sites. For years xkcd has been appropriate. Today it is not. It's not unreasonable that some people would be pissed about that.

Yeah, that's pretty much all I got. Sorry for stealing your thunder, Carl. I know this isn't exactly angriest rants material, but this comic is so fucked up I'm sure there are still lots of angry things for you to say.


Jay out.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Comic 631: Robbed of a joke

[golly, even Rob wants to get in on the anti-631 fun!]



Am I the only one disappointed that Randy didn't show some balls and draw some balls? Come on, man. I WANT TO SEE YOUR CARTOON SCROTUM.

Seriously though. This was a rotten piece of shit! I am normally at least vaguely aware of what the joke is supposed to be. But this? What is this? What the fuck is this?

I went to the forums in the hopes someone would enlighten me but all I found was this:

I do believe we have here a return to form for Randall. I wonder how the haters will try to justify their feelings now.
"I got fired for looking at this at work today, I hope you're happy!"
"How DARE you distribute this filth!"
"You drew the labia minora/areola/something wrong, you hack!" (Labia is in spellcheck but not minora or areola? Huh.)
"Wheres the tripod, huh?"
... Okay, I'll stop now.

And who among those that have been under age 15 in the last 5 years hasn't visited Wikipedia for their jollies? It's this generations National Geographic!

YOU CAN'T MAKE THIS SHIT UP. This fellow not only thinks it's a return to form, but he is convinced that it is so brilliant there is nothing left for the haters to say, except for minor nitpicks! (He also thinks it's normal to go to Wikipedia for porn, but maybe kids these days really do that--he appears to be the expert. I was 15 a long time ago, before Wikipedia was a twinkle in your father's eye, maybe.)

So, for the poster linked: there is a lot to find wrong with the comic! Most obviously is WHERE IS THE DANG JOKE because seriously, I can't find it. Also there is the fact that, oh, Randy is drawing detailed female genitalia and breasts (though in fairness, a breast is pretty simple so detailed isn't that impressive), without warning, for no reason at all. Because Randy, you see, is obsessed with sex. Sex sex sex. He just can't get enough any, at all.

What really interests me, though, is the Megan reference. See, I'm pretty sure Randy is trolling us here. He's been increasingly mentioning her out of her usual context of creepy romances, and in creepy sex-stalking, and I think that's deliberate. He knows. He wants us to freak out, and he knows it'll blow up each time.

The thing is, this means he loses. He's counter-trolling, sure, but that means he's letting us get to him--and in the wrong way. He wants us to freak out. He's banking on his fanboys loving him forever, and it's going to cost him. He's not good at this game. He's got thin skin. He cares! He really cares! It's hilarious!

(I did not promise it would be a good post.)