Saturday, October 23, 2010
[ALT: The test didn't (spoiler alert) destroy the world, but the fact that they were even doing those calculations makes theirs the coolest jobs ever.]
I'm sure every one of you who doesn't suck has watched Dr. Strangelove. The premise of the movie runs something like this: what if everyone who was supposed to prevent disaster from happening in the Cold War were crazies and incompetents? The result is one of the best absurdist comedies out there.
Much like Dr. Strangelove, this comic has a premise: what if one of the researchers on the bomb didn't know math very well? The result of this one, unfortunately, is incredibly boring. Nothing wacky happens at all! It turns out, in Randy's hypothetical scenario, that if someone researching the bomb didn't know math very well, someone else would just redo his work, and disaster would be averted.
I don't need to tell you how boring this is, but I do want to draw attention to something here: this is a hypothetical scenario. An alternate history, if you will. Randy came up with something he thought was hilariously wacky--one of the scientists sucks at math! HILARIOUS! And maybe this could be a great story. An absurdist comedy about the scientific elite.
Except even when Randy is coming up with wacky hypothetical scenarios, it's still fucking boring. Randy is unable to conceive of something amusing happening. His mind is so incredibly boring that his wacky hypotheticals end exactly the way the real world events happened: without mishap.
There's so many ways this could have been funny. Funny characters, a funny story, something funny happening. Anything. Anything besides "oh no we have to recheck our work!" Anything besides someone saying "hey I don't remember the mnemonic we were taught in high school, which one is it" and someone else saying "OMG YOU DON'T REMEMBER THE MNEMONIC YOU SUCK AT MATH LET'S REDO ALL YOUR WORK."
In conclusion, Randy sucks and I hate you.