Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Comic 846: $uck$

[Satanic carrion fowl "ravenzomg" has emailed me this, which is apparently a review or something of the latest comic. May god forgive me. -Ed.]

Now, we all know Randa££'s ability to tell a topical joke on time is questionable at the best of times. And dealing with Pop Culture, which by its very function fluctuates to fit the needs of the sad mass of teens who are "rebelling" "against" their "restrictive" "parents". Please note that there is a clear inverse trend between What is Cool [the real cool, not the Nerd concept of "Cool-Uncool"], and What Geeks like [Which is Uncool, or "Uncool-Cool"].

Randa££, champion of Geekdom and all that is Uncool [which is actually the new Cool FYI], hates everything that is Cool [The old Cool, not the new one]. Modern dance music? Totally Uncool [which is to say that it is actually Cool]! So Randa££ has championed their cause [which is to say "The mouthbreathers' cause"] by creating a comic that his Cultists can now print off [or order prints from the store! Why not buy twenty?] to show everyone who ever, like, mentions that awful music and tell them with a high squeaky voice, "Actually, that song is terrible advice as evidenced by my parchment in yonder hand!"

...And then the preppy girl will proceed to reply to their friend [they've since forgotten that the Mouthbreather ever existed], "Like, oh my god, Natalie, do you remember Tik Tok? That sooooo brings me back to, like, that summer! You know?" And they'll proceed to sing [out of tune] Tik Tok, recycling the chorus when they forget where the verses went.

And those poor geeks will be confused -- remember? Why isn't this topical, and why aren't they being heralded as the Messenger of Truth?

Brief Pop History Lesson!
[[Most of the following links [Except for the introductory "Ke$ha" link] go to Youtube music videos, click at your discression!]]
Aug 07, 2009 ---- Ke$ha, previously a fringe artist, releases her soon-to-be-summer-hit "Tik Tok!"
Feb 19, 2010 ---- "Blah Blah" is released as her second single, a collaboarion with questionably popular "3Oh!3" [[Not a joke, that is actually them.]]
May 21, 2010 ---- Your Love Is My Drug
Jul 13, 2010 ---- "Take It Off", the fourth and last single from her "Animal" album
Oct 22, 2010 ---- "We R Who We R", her fifth single and the first from her new album, "Cannibal"

For those of you who are completely in the dark, in Randa££'s "comic", the comment is a reference to Ke$ha's break-out hit which is still probably her most well-known, because despite having an ounce of potential for something half-decent [in material, if not quality] to her, Ke$ha prefers to release singles which show off that which her audience will appreciate most: Clubbing, aimless lust, and getting wasted. So, naturally, "Tik Tok" is by far the most popular of her songs as it features all of the above, and then some.

And I quote,

"Wake up in the morning feeling like P Diddy
Grab my glasses, I'm out the door, I'm gonna hit this city!
Before I leave, brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack
'Cause when I leave for the night, I ain't coming back"

That's enough of that, I think.

Let's go ahead and compare.

Aug 07, 2009 --> Ke$ha glorifies being a drain on society with her light and promiscuous syth-pop sound.
Jan 12, 2011 --> Randa££ sets right the world by telling his followers to spread the word: Toothpaste has been shown to prevent plaque! Ke$ha's oral hygiene is at risk [Jack Daniels is actually the third least offensive thing that goes into Ke$ha's mouth on a daily basis.]!

Now, let's take a cross-comparison. After all, being a satirist is a hard job -- it takes time to find something funny to say about topical things!

Key Of Awesome, Feb 01, 2010 releases a full parody of the song and music video titled appropriately "Glitter Puke"
Cracked, Mar 21 2010, a satirical review involving both "Tik Tok" and "Blah Blah" [Feb 19th '10, remember], including graphics.

Aaaaaaand, about 9 months later we have this comic. Topicality, everyone! Topicality. Now, again, the issue isn't necessarily Randa££'s being late, but rather that 9 months after other popular satires, he chooses to pick on a single line in a single Ke$ha released four singles and 17 months ago.... and this is it:


All this to say, there are three clear faults here:
1) Too little. This comic is little more than, "Ke$ha's song is not a good guide for healthy living"
To which I reply, "Wait, so until you realized that Jack Daniels was NOT a good substitute for toothpaste, you were following her advice???"

2) Too late. 17 months after the single, and 9 months after all the other Satirists had their fun. Honestly, this song is just.... old. It's pop culture, and anything more than 6 months is long forgotten. Stereo Love, you guys remember that? Yeah, that's what I thought. Although, that song also happens to be priceless and the perfect lament for lovers clinging to broken relationships under the assumption that, if there is a basic almost chemical attraction between you two, then surely the lies are meaningless -- what matters is the connection you shared, and how absolutely special he made you feel that one time. You'd rather cling to a broken relationship, grasping at every fleeting show of affection than face the world alone. He says he's sorry; that's enough isn't it? You'll never get that feeling again anywhere else, so you just have to stick it out and... and.... umm.......

3) Randa££, when you gonna stop breaking my heaaaaaart?
I don't wanna beeee another ooooOOOOoooone!
Paying for the things I've never doooooooone.
Don't let go,
Don't let go...
To my looooove!

I can fix up those lies.
Oh baby, baby I run, but I'm running to you!
You won't see me cry, I'll hide it inside --
My heart is in pain but I'm smiling for you!

*SNIFF*

...

201 comments:

  1. Pop culture references so obvious and blatantly stupid even Family Guy probably wouldn't touch it.

    xkcd is truly a comic for smart, sophisticated types.

    CAPTCHA: ausper, as in "I meant to say that xkcd is for those with ausper-ger's."

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  2. 'To which I reply, "Wait, so until you realized that Jack Daniels was NOT a good substitute for toothpaste, you were following her advice???"'

    See, that's why the comic took so long to come out! A year of brushing teeth with Jack followed by months recovering from expensive and painful root canal surgery, and Randall is back to give this advice to his readers should they choose to go down the same path.

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  3. It only took so long to release this because Randall is so devoted to the scientific method. If he hadn't tested brushing with Jack Daniels for an adequate experimental period, this whole comic would just be silly.

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  4. I almost chuckled at the alt-text. I think it would've made a better comic: "The American Dental Association's short-lived attempt to promote dental hygiene to young people: *shows a band playing that song to empty hall*"

    It's not the best parody of a song. Song parodies are ridiculously easy to make.

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  5. Yeah. The mouseover text was easily the best part of the strip, so making it the centrepiece of the strip would have resulted in a better comic.

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  6. See, this is why this is such a stupid comic. Is Randall investing in this new completely clueless personality for Megan now? Because this was stupid.

    Was this comic even needed? Are there really any people who'd use whiskey as toothbrush in order for such an announcement to be needed? Because a lone female stick woman lecturing to my face isn't funny. Not without some proper context or characterization, at least.

    This is stupid. xkcd's fanbase better stop claiming that their godly comic is intended for an audience of geniuses, because the latests comics aren't very flattering to one's intellect...

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  7. It may not be a substitute for toothpaste (wrong consistency), but you're saying alcohol can lead to dental infections? Did anyone tell the makers of Listerine?

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  8. None of those video links work for me. They're all "blocked in my country". I'm not entirely sure that's a bad thing.

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  9. ravenzomg is the bestest, y/n

    (clue: y)

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  10. as a devout jesus-loving fundie (according to several cuddlefish), i cannot approve of satanic carrion birds

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  11. How can the Laughing Buddha be a fundie Christian that don't make no sense

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  12. i don't understand it either, but they were very insistent

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  13. The review is actually kind of funny, except for the self-righteous conservative bullshit of putting down female promiscuity and automatically assuming that because someone likes drugs, parties and sex, they must be a "drain on society".

    That's gotta be the most fascist thing to call someone.

    But yeah, the beat and tune are unimaginative and the lyrics less than interesting outside the "target audience". And the comic manages to be worse.

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  14. ^
    Drain on society.

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  15. come now, anon 5:43. we're all fascists here

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  16. i thought we were communist muslisms

    or is that the same thing

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  17. that depends. are you a republican, or are you someone with a basic understanding of how politics works?

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  18. Sorry to you non-{Canada, USA, and... ???} viewers, I just took the Vevo links because they were all the official music videos in a cute little jumble, and technically legal [not that this is a REAL concern]. But hey, you have the song name and musical artist, you are all grown up enough to do the youtube search y'rself you Godless Heathens.

    Oh, and I stand by the statements that Anon543 is putting in my mouth, they all sound pretty good. Well, except the insinuation of sexism -- I put down male promiscuity even more than female, although discriminate against drug/party/sex animals equally. Wait, that is sexism. Fuckin' man-whores, just hate them so much. SO MUCH.

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  19. Does anyone else here have the feeling Randall recently watched the Mythbusters episode where they had people putting their hands in buckets of ice to see if swearing would increase their pain threshold?

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  20. Ctrl + F: Megan

    only found the comments

    HOLY SH-

    oh, this post wasn't written by Rob. That sure explains it isn't as horrible and unfunny as XKCD itself.

    Good job on getting a guest reviewer, Rob. It's the best work you do.

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  21. just when you fuckers were about to get a reprieve. "surely this time," i thought to myself, "these mouth-breathers can go a single post without complaining about the megan jokes."

    apparently not! so thanks to anon 7:56 you can all look forward to their continuation.

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  22. Rob, I resent your implication. I know plenty of people who haven't the faintest idea how American politics work, and who self-identify as something other than Republican.

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  23. @Alsworth: don't feed the troll.

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  24. Anon, he's hungry! I can't just let him starve like that!

    (he's hungry because he's fat)

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  25. why do people always assume alsworth is being serious

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  26. I know you guys are bashing this comic for being to late seeing as how that song isn't charting anymore and all, but to hear that song and think about dental hygiene is more original than you'll ever be. Also I love how you actually have to read the comic to the end to figure out why this is about Ke$ha, that moment when I went from being confused to understanding the joke made my laughter ever much more intense!

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  27. Sven thats the first thing i realized.
    I literally just finished watching the episode like 3 hours ago.

    ...

    OMG RANDALL GET OUT OF MY HEAD
    *climaxes*

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  28. @anon 10:45

    Lololol I no rite
    it was just SO FUNNEH XD XD XD

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  29. I might just be a bit punchy, but that was a lil' bit ridiculously hard of a read, with a bit too many links. Breaking into stereo love at the end saved it.

    Nevertheless, I like these satanic carrion reprieves from Rob, not so much that I'd like them every week, but still, better then shufti or drunkloria.

    That's a pretty high score for such a fail troll Rob. You're getting generous in your old age, it was a 2.5 at most even when adding the degree of difficulty.

    Also, nedz moar megan jokes

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  30. i gave him an extra point because i can imagine people who wouldn't notice the obvious trolling

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  31. UndercoverCuddlefishJanuary 13, 2011 at 12:45 AM

    i thought the extra point was to troll capn

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  32. Rob, your Carl-borne hate-site is hating on me, make it stop.

    Capn: True, my post was full of half-relevant nearly contentless links, but so is the internet -- I apologize for nothing.

    Just wait, after 3 or 4 more Robstrous [spell-check suggests: Disastrous] posts you will be begging for more of Ravenzomg's link-clusterfucks.

    {In which I'd link to Edward Maya's newest single "Desert Rain", because there is no argument that cannot be instantly validated with a link to an Edward Maya/Vika Jigulina compilation. But Rob's site is on a witch-hunt today, so you will all have to imagine this is a real link.}

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  33. XKCDsucks was apparently "suspicious activity"; had to verify my account with a cellphone. I blame Rob, this surely has nothing to do with sending html code littered with links to Rob in an email.

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  34. Hey, if we tone down the Randy hate, do you think we could post reviews on XKCD forums? Would our critique be welcomed with open arms? I think I'm going to try doing that now to see if it will work. Stop me if it's been done before.

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  35. Unless Rob decides to make all his reviews from now on blandly positive something tells me that won't go over well.

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  36. The latest xkcd is completely true!!! Dental hygiene is very important and well done to Randall for pointing this out!!!

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  37. You're either a democrat or someone who has a vague understanding of how economics works.

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  38. Simpsons had an opening about 6 months ago or so (I think) with that same song. And Mythbusters did the hand-in-cold-water thing some time ago too.

    Randy is really living by his advice at http://xkcd.com/606/

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  39. xkcd is a pretty cool guy. eh steals idaes and doesn't afraid of anything.

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  40. 745: What about Objectivists?

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  41. They're slightly less dumb.

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  42. rob@7:58

    Rob, there would be nothing to complain about if you weren't a shitty writer. Megan jokes are a running gag because you're as unfunny as Randal.

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  43. @Anon 10:45

    To hear that song and think about dental hygiene is more PEDANTIC than we'll ever be. What's next? "Hey, Bon Jovi! Those attempting to actually LIVE on a prayer will find that prayers are intangible things, and cannot actually serve as a dwelling place. So the next time you give out advice like that, take a step back and think, 'Does this make sense?' Thank you."

    And I'm with the person who questioned the negative effects of brushing your teeth with alcohol. Wouldn't alcohol be really good at getting rid of the germs that cause dental problems?

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  44. "Gary Numan my man! There are many lifestyles available to you. I have a comfortable house in Massachusetts from where I write internet comics. So please, appreciate the full diversity of life. "In cars" is not "the only way to live"."

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  45. OMG, I've heard that song. Randall, get out of my head!!!

    Don't you dare critique this comic, because music pedantry is one of the highest forms of humour. It also teaches us an important lesson. I hope tomorrow's comic is about an open letter to the Manic Street Preachers, saying that suicide is NOT painless. Because people need to learn these lessons.

    Anyone who reads xkcd has the responsibility to pass on the messages in the comics to less intelligent people. How are they to know otherwise?

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  46. "Mr. Morrissey, you probably never had the experience of dying, nor have you actually witnessed a person dying. I can assure you that dying is not a pleasant sensation, because it almost always involves pain, sadness, despair and even worse things. So, there is nothing heavenly about being crushed by a double decker bus, and crashing into a 10 ton truck could never be a pleasure, no matter who is dying with you.

    So, next time you are with someone, try to feel good about being alive.

    Yours,
    Munroe"

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  47. The above parody of Randall Munroe is very inaccurate, because it doesn't have painful amounts of purple prose and stilted language.

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  48. i bet Randall gets invited to the BEST parties

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  49. Ravenz
    Omg
    You sure
    Do
    Like
    Links a lot

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  50. best thing i've done online: inspired a blues version of Tik Tok - http://www.overthinkingit.com/2010/02/23/kehas-tik-tok-blues/

    and i have woken up and drank a bottle of Jack

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  51. "The above parody of Randall Munroe is very inaccurate, because it doesn't have painful amounts of purple prose and stilted language. "

    and because There Is A Light That Never Goes Out is like an awesome version of one of his 'relationship' comics

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  52. Jon Levi: The Manic Street Preachers could then forward the letter to Johnny Mandel.

    And Randall could make a comic about his name being a bit like Mandelbrot. It would be funny because Mandelbrot is a thing I recognise. Oh, references!

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  53. I tolerated this and yet my children were not next. What's the address of the President of Pop?

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  54. "Rob, there would be nothing to complain about if you weren't a shitty writer. Megan jokes are a running gag because you're as unfunny as Randal."

    no, they're a running gag because people keep complaining about them. most of the time it requires more effort than I'd usually expend to shoehorn a Megan joke in, but I've long ago swore to myself that so long as people keep complaining about them I'll keep putting them in. it's my little gift to me--so long as there are stupid people out there who think that I'm somehow accidentally writing Megan jokes in every post, I will be happy. but, alas for you, no matter how often I remind people that the only reason I write them is because they get such an excellent reaction, people keep complaining.

    never change, cuddlefish. never change.

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  55. Rob, doing something over and over again because it annoys them isn't as clever as you think. I'm sure you'll say "I'm not trying to be clever", but there's no positive aspect to it at all. The only result is that you bore us, and give cuddlefish an opportunity to paint xkcd-haters as childish contrarians.

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  56. Whoops. "Rob, doing something over and over again because it annoys people" is what I meant to say.

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  57. right, I'm not trying to be clever. I'm trying to derive some amusement from the predictability of the moronic cuddlefish masses.

    see, it's patently obvious that I do it on purpose. it's patently obvious that I've read the complaints about it and continue on--if not because of them, then at least in spite of them. and it's patently obvious that the megan jokes are in no way necessary to the corpus of the reviews. and yet people continue to complain! even people who follow the comment threads and know that I've already rejected all the other complaints.

    you know that classic (but totally erroneous) definition of insanity, "doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result?" that's what happens here. since the cuddlefish offer precious little insight or intelligent commentary, I figure I may as well derive some enjoyment out of them, especially since it's so depressingly easy. as I've already noted, I didn't even have to write a post and they still complain about it.

    I think it's how earnest they seem to think I am about it that really does it for me. it's like they believe, in spite of all the evidence to the contrary, that I genuinely think that I am being brilliant and clever when I force in another half-assed Megan joke. that I truly think I'm enhancing the quality of my post, that it's out of some misguided belief that this is what the people want to read.

    human stupidity has always fascinated me, and I appear to have tapped a limitless source of it. what possible reason could I have to stop?

    it helps, of course, that none of the complainers have ever been respected members of the community. ever. and it helps that this is literally the only thing anyone ever complains about.

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  58. the strange thing is that when you awkwardly force a rubbish Megan joke in that actually IMPROVES the quality of your posts

    (zing?)

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  59. rob, the internet is SERIOUS BUSINESS!

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  60. Get it? Rob pretends to be horrible writer just to troll us. He sure had me fooled! He keeps writing like a terrible writer because he's actually not.

    I'm sure Rob has seen this old image before. You'd think he'd know better not imitate the behavior dead on. I bet he does it just to fool me! GOOMH!

    http://lol.i.trollyou.com/LOL-I-TROLL-YOU.png

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  61. see? it's posts like that. they completely ignore the obvious facts of the matter and assume that the reason I intentionally put in a joke that everyone complains about in every post that I write is because I'm a "terrible writer." they're so insistent on this fact that any attempt to point out the obvious facts is greeted with doubt.

    even when I have explained my reasons for writing the Megan jokes at great length, they still complain about them. they don't even believe my reasons, so convinced are they that I write them because of some personal failing.

    and you people want me to stop! and not because it's cruel to the poor mentally handicapped individuals who continue to attempt to get me to stop, but simply because you don't like them.

    time and again they try to get me to stop, always for the same reasons, and time and again I tell them that their complaints only fill me with resolve to continue. and yet they press on. how can anyone expect me to stop when there is such fascinating human idiocy on display?

    the one great tragedy of maintaining a hate blog is that people think themselves brilliant judges of character of people who write things on the internet in very specific contexts. they categorically dismiss the idea that the person behind the artificially contrived hateful rhetoric might be smirking the whole time at the cavalcade of human idiocy that responds to the posts. they assume that there is sincerity on the internet. it is as heartbreaking as it is hilarious.

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  62. Keep digging, Robby old chum, keep digging.

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  63. You know Rob I'd call you a boring and easily amused troll but a lot of the complaints really are fascinating in the depth of their stupidity.

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  64. I want more Megan jokes *wink*wink*

    But in all seriousness, I think there should be more guest posts. Not that I hate Rob's writing, but it would break up the monotony of the same writer's tone.

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  65. I like to think that my blogger picture does a good job of conveying my reaction to the profound stupidity of this page's cuddlefish.

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  66. mctony: yeah, normally i'd say it's because i'm easily amused but these people are just really dumb, and continue to find new and awesome ways to do it.

    justscott: i like guest posts. but people have to send them to me.

    ves: I wish I could be surprised at their stupidity, but the only surprising thing is how completely predictable they are. well, that, and I can't fathom how stupid you would have to be to think that I post megan jokes for any reason other than 'to annoy people,' but there we are.

    I often suspect that they actually think they're funny, so they continue to complain about them to ensure that I keep posting them.

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  67. Rob, what if I say I like a lot of the Megan jokes and the stories you tell about Randy? Not all, but oftentimes your posts will derive humor from XKCD where none is to be found.

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  68. i'm sick and tired of everyone acting like sex with condoms is fine and they don't mind it at all, and acting so fucking responsible, oh, of course we use protection. condoms fucking suck! i take forever to come and it isn't half as good. i wish more are r&d were being put into condoms not being shit.

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  69. Hello, cuddlefish, hello to all and one. The latest one should be going up really soon, and I really hope I can do this right. I believe XKCD updates at midnight and so I'll be ready for it. Later~

    -Tétestdé

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  70. well, I don't try to make them /bad/, I just choose subject matter that will annoy the critics. the mere use of the word Megan sets these people off to the point that they can't even comment on the rest of the review.

    I use it sort of like I use irony on people, really. it separates the people who are dumb enough to be annoyed by it from the people who are actually worth interacting with.

    it's kind of a fun little trick, actually. with a mere five letters, I can make a whole troupe of anonymous people complain that my jokes are stale, without actually commenting on the jokes in the slightest!

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  71. Rob: *trolls*
    Cuddlefish: OMG U SUCK STOP THAT
    Rob: I won't stop trolling you until you stop complaining about.
    Cuddlefish: OMG U SUCK STOP TROLLING
    Rob: I'm serious.
    Cuddlefish: STOP NOW!!!!!11
    Rob: *trolls*
    Cuddlefish: OMG U SUCK STOP THAT

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  72. yeah that's
    that's about the size of it.

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  73. Ves, I think your profile picture does a good job of conveying your reaction to pretty much everything.

    re: 847

    OMG, I also have recently read LOTR! GOOMHR

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  74. To respond to the posts "wouldn't brushing with Jack be good for teeth? Alcohol is a disinfectant," the thing about almost all liquors is that they're fermented sugars. Whiskey, specifically, comes from fermented grain. Grains consist mostly of complex starches which are broken down by saliva into simple sugars (hold a cracker in your mouth for a minute and it will start tasting sweet). Brushing your teeth with this would leave a sugar coating on your teeth, allowing the bacteria to quickly grow back despite the disinfection from the alcohol.

    The more you know!

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  75. @alsworth

    I literally groaned out loud when I saw "my favorite Tolkien quote."

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  76. As I read on the XKCD forums (and confirmed by Googling): a high concentration of sugar will actually kill bacteria. Preposterous, right? NOT WITH SCIENCE! The low concentration of aqueous sugar on the inside of the bacteria relative to the high concentration of aqueous sugar on the outside of the bacteria causes water to exit the bacteria (so as to raise the concentration of the sugar and thus match the outside's concentration) which leads to the bacteria simply shrinking and dying. I think the inside is known as a hypotonic solution or something.

    The more YOU know!

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  77. Rob's usually a pretty boring dude and I groan on the inside when I see that he has written more than the usual number of posts, but when it comes to this misguided grandstanding? I laugh vociferously on the inside (it's a strange sort of noise that could easily be mistaken for indigestion). What a guy.

    Yeah, vodka's much better than whiskey for cleaning your teeth with. Somebody should let Ke$ha know... or maybe we should tell Randall and he can pass it on.

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  78. I sort of like the idea behind the joke (someone using a star to find comfort when it actually exploded millions of years ago) but this strip was a weak delivery and far too long for the joke.

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  79. Er, actually just thousands of years ago. Millions of years ago it wouldn't be visible.

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  80. dude, for the first time ever i will read the xkcdsucks review but not the comic itself. WALL OF TEXT

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  81. I stopped reading 847 at "I know things are tough right now." I'm assuming the rest of the comic is melodramatic bullshit probably relating to that one sick relative Randy had... how long ago was it?

    Stick Guy #1 seems to be missing a chunk of his head in the first panel. And if you just look at Stick Guy #2 in the last panel, it almost looks like it would be two stick figures making out....

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  82. And now, for the comic. I have to say, I'm thankful it isn't [i]awful[/i] like 845. However, the punchline in the penultimate panel only aroused mild feelings of pleasantness (which I quelled quickly and filled the void with hate, as it should be). Probably because, as far as subverted expectations go, this one was fairly lame and far from unpredictable. Sadly, the final panel is just a second, much lesser, unnecessary punchline (a distressingly common occurrence). Y'know, I think my expectations would've been so totally blown out of the water if he made the Lord of the Rings quote as the final panel, and then the alt text could be a rephrasing of the second-to-last panel. Or, if he really absolutely wanted that boring, final joke in there, he just made the lesson the alt text instead.

    As far as the art goes, it's nothing special. It's not like it's hideous or anything as it serves its purpose, just not in an interesting manner. The LotR panel isn't very soft on the eyes with its nondescript, jagged line serving as mountains and the single white dot as the star. Furthermore, I must complain about that one, awkward, text-filled panel though.

    I feel like there had to have been a better way to fill the space. If he had gone the path of my first edit idea, he could have made the first three panels all horizontally adjacent to one another with a big, beautiful splash panel of the night sky (the special star would be burning more radiantly than all the others, of course) containing the LotR quote just beneath them. The representation of his hope as a child is gone and, in fact, never existed during his lifetime (Was it all just false hope? Was it all just pointless? Is it all meaningless [i]now?[/i]. This sets the audience up to feel good and then they get pleasantly surprised by it being contrasted with this bit of dark humor.

    On the other hand, if he did the other idea, he could do the same thing with the panel kind of just tacked on below the quote, dangling there. That would look pretty bad too though, so I think it would've been for the best if Randy had simply scrapped the final panel, forgotten all about the current (and very boring) alt-text, and re-done the layout and art. Unfortunately, this leads me to point out how Randy would actually churn out better comics if he only had an editor to take a look at it. Seriously, just show it to a friend that's good at being unbiased. Why do I say this is unfortunate? Because when this has been suggested in the past I have seen a LOT of people here just absolutely refuse to accept it's possible he might need one and that the work he puts out is anything but perfect.

    Finally, I'd like to say that, if this were XKCD Sucks, I'd make mention of the fact that the LotR reference seems a bit like GOOMHba bait. It mixed okay into the comic, but as it stands 847 is more about astronomy than about hope (which is obviously the subject of the quote).

    P.S. Yes, I know, go and laugh in your corners because I called something "GOOMHba bait." Such a shame that the secret is out though.

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  83. And now, for the comic. I have to say, I'm thankful it isn't [i]awful[/i] like 845. However, the punchline in the penultimate panel only aroused mild feelings of pleasantness (which I quelled quickly and filled the void with hate, as it should be). Probably because, as far as subverted expectations go, this one was fairly lame and far from unpredictable. Sadly, the final panel is just a second, much lesser, unnecessary punchline (a distressingly common occurrence). Y'know, I think my expectations would've been so totally blown out of the water if he made the Lord of the Rings quote as the final panel, and then the alt text could be a rephrasing of the second-to-last panel. Or, if he really absolutely wanted that boring, final joke in there, he just made the lesson the alt text instead.

    As far as the art goes, it's nothing special. It's not like it's hideous or anything as it serves its purpose, just not in an interesting manner. The LotR panel isn't very soft on the eyes with its nondescript, jagged line serving as mountains and the single white dot as the star. Furthermore, I must complain about that one, awkward, text-filled panel though.

    I feel like there had to have been a better way to fill the space. If he had gone the path of my first edit idea, he could have made the first three panels all horizontally adjacent to one another with a big, beautiful splash panel of the night sky (the special star would be burning more radiantly than all the others, of course) containing the LotR quote just beneath them. The representation of his hope as a child is gone and, in fact, never existed during his lifetime (Was it all just false hope? Was it all just pointless? Is it all meaningless [i]now?[/i]. This sets the audience up to feel good and then they get pleasantly surprised by it being contrasted with this bit of dark humor.

    On the other hand, if he did the other idea, he could do the same thing with the panel kind of just tacked on below the quote, dangling there. That would look pretty bad too though, so I think it would've been for the best if Randy had simply scrapped the final panel, forgotten all about the current (and very boring) alt-text, and re-done the layout and art. Unfortunately, this leads me to point out how Randy would actually churn out better comics if he only had an editor to take a look at it. Seriously, just show it to a friend that's good at being unbiased. Why do I say this is unfortunate? Because when this has been suggested in the past I have seen a LOT of people here just absolutely refuse to accept it's possible he might need one and that the work he puts out is anything but perfect.

    Finally, I'd like to say that, if this were XKCD Sucks, I'd make mention of the fact that the LotR reference seems a bit like GOOMHba bait. It mixed okay into the comic, but as it stands 847 is more about astronomy than about hope (which is obviously the subject of the quote).

    P.S. Yes, I know, go and laugh in your corners because I called something "GOOMHba bait." Such a shame that the secret is out though.

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  84. And now, for the comic. I have to say, I'm thankful it isn't [i]awful[/i] like 845. However, the punchline in the penultimate panel only aroused mild feelings of pleasantness (which I quelled quickly and filled the void with hate, as it should be). Probably because, as far as subverted expectations go, this one was fairly lame and far from unpredictable. Sadly, the final panel is just a second, much lesser, unnecessary punchline (a distressingly common occurrence). Y'know, I think my expectations would've been so totally blown out of the water if he made the Lord of the Rings quote as the final panel, and then the alt text could be a rephrasing of the second-to-last panel. Or, if he really absolutely wanted that boring, final joke in there, he just made the lesson the alt text instead.

    As far as the art goes, it's nothing special. It's not like it's hideous or anything as it serves its purpose, just not in an interesting manner. The LotR panel isn't very soft on the eyes with its nondescript, jagged line serving as mountains and the single white dot as the star. Furthermore, I must complain about that one, awkward, text-filled panel though.

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  85. I feel like there had to have been a better way to fill the space. If he had gone the path of my first edit idea, he could have made the first three panels all horizontally adjacent to one another with a big, beautiful splash panel of the night sky (the special star would be burning more radiantly than all the others, of course) containing the LotR quote just beneath them. The representation of his hope as a child is gone and, in fact, never existed during his lifetime (Was it all just false hope? Was it all just pointless? Is it all meaningless [i]now?[/i]. This sets the audience up to feel good and then they get pleasantly surprised by it being contrasted with this bit of dark humor.

    ReplyDelete
  86. On the other hand, if he did the other idea, he could do the same thing with the panel kind of just tacked on below the quote, dangling there. That would look pretty bad too though, so I think it would've been for the best if Randy had simply scrapped the final panel, forgotten all about the current (and very boring) alt-text, and re-done the layout and art. Unfortunately, this leads me to point out how Randy would actually churn out better comics if he only had an editor to take a look at it. Seriously, just show it to a friend that's good at being unbiased. Why do I say this is unfortunate? Because when this has been suggested in the past I have seen a LOT of people here just absolutely refuse to accept it's possible he might need one and that the work he puts out is anything but perfect.

    Finally, I'd like to say that, if this were XKCD Sucks, I'd make mention of the fact that the LotR reference seems a bit like GOOMHba bait. It mixed okay into the comic, but as it stands 847 is more about astronomy than about hope (which is obviously the subject of the quote). *Shrugs* It doesn't bother me all that much.

    P.S. Yes, I know, go and laugh in your corners because I called something "GOOMHba bait." Such a shame that the secret is out though.

    ReplyDelete
  87. Notes

    Broken into three parts because the URL is too long. I realized very easily how I could have fixed that, but oops that happened after my first post so whatever.

    It seems they like to laugh secretly at people who make "Get out of my head, Randall!" comments. Those cuddlefish must feel so proud and superior.

    Apparently, also, the XKCD forums will not allow for the first posts of a new member to go through immediately. They have to be screened by a moderator and deemed worthy of being on the fora. USE THIS INFO WISELY, FUTURE TROLLS.

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  88. Fuck you, blogspot. It says the URL is too large and makes it seem like the post won't be going through when it actually does. Is there someone non-retarded to fix my mistake? Like, Rob, do you have the ability to remove comments?

    ReplyDelete
  89. I don't, but if you post under a Blogspot account you can delete your own

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  90. That's useful info for the future, but I guess for the present we'll just have to stare at a massive wall of text rivaled in size only by Rob.

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  91. ...why does Randall insist on not ending on a punchline!?? again, who ends a joke with "i'll, uh, keep that in mind"? HINT-just because you told a lame joke and someone responded similarly, it doesn't make a good comic...

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  92. the better question is why does he insist on a punchline at all?

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  93. i would take out the last two panels, replace the dialog with something like: "cool. so which star is it?" "well, i found out when I was 15 it exploded 13,760 years ago..."
    that's still pretty crappy, but it at least meets CBS/Big Bang Theory level of comedy. put a laugh track behind it and GOLDMINE

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  94. I'd throw out the whole comic and give the concept to Zach Weiner, then redraw whatever he does in xkcd style.

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  95. A pointless Full Metal Jacket reference, a pointless Lord of the Rings reference, and "asymptotic" is such a big word! This guy really can do it all!

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  96. Though, to tell the truth, when I saw the word "stingray" I got all excited for a dated Crocodile Hunter reference. I'm a little bit disappointed really.

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  97. Rob. You are not fooling anyone. We all know that you DO, in fact, *accidentally* write Megan jokes in every post. It has been WELL-ESTABLISHED that you and Randy are the same person. It's laughingly obvious that when Randy (you) sits down to write a post about his latest comic, he (you) can't HELP but to randomly mention Megan. It is utterly beyond his (your) control. He (you) tries to write a post, and this stuff about Megan just comes pouring out, not as an act of will, but totally on accident. All of the regular posters already know, so just give up the charade.

    P.S. Ravenzomg you should try promiscuity sometime, it is fun

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  98. @Anon 10:50

    Please, please, please tell me you're not referring to the "there are many like it but this is mine" as a FMJ reference. Please tell me I've missed something. I do *not* need another reason to cry for humanity.

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  99. Why would it bother you? Is military fanaticism an essential feature of humanity?

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  100. what are they sitting on?

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  101. The idea that 847's character would randomly pick a star that later went supernova is so unlikely, it almost makes me angry. It's not funny at all, it's just one of the stupidest and most contrived things that has ever appeared in an XKCD comic.

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  102. I'd love to pick a star that eventually went supernova--I'd feel so special! Randy's clearly a pretty fucked up guy.

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  103. I gotta brand new review for the brand new xkcd. Check it:

    TLDR, bitches.

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  104. Anyone else notice that in the new comic Randy wasted the potential symbolism that was ready and waiting in his own idea?

    A super nova is the death of one star that then provides the building blocks of many, many others. Nebulas are basically star factories. The potential symbolism is obvious. Picking a soon-to-be nebula as your source of hope and comfort should actually be more comforting and hopeful than a boring average star that just sits there emitting light and fusing atoms. It even fits with the Tolkien quote, god damn it! "The shadow was only a small and passing thing". One light goes out, followed by a period of darkness, and then many more are born.

    Instead, he goes for a joke about how we should only choose main sequence, mediocre, "burn average, burn long" stars, or brown dwarves which are literally large masses that never quite made it to being stars. I'm pretty sure brown dwarfs aren't even visible to the human eye!

    In conclusion, Randall Monroe fails at turning science into art, due to not thinking through the scientific implications and not being adept with basic artistic techniques, such as symbolism.

    Note- In keeping with a venerable xkcdsucks tradition, started by the great and powerful drunkloria, I moderately drunk at the time of this posting.

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  105. I look forward to a nasty review of 847 based on the claim that stars do not exist, by noted fundie Rob or pagan Ravenzomg, who pride themselves on being above science

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  106. To completely change the topic - has anyone else here noticed the shitty-looking "Crazy Ghosts" ads that are all over Project Wonderful lately? It looks like some high schooler trying to copy the Evony ads with stuff from his animu sketchbook.

    I hope Carl or somebody gives it a review cause I just can't bring myself to dignify it with a click, not even to satisfy my morbid curiosity of finding shitty things to laugh at.

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  107. http://www.webcitation.org/5vjJ4BSZB

    First thoughts before reading it: ugly white-on-black walls of text.

    After reading it: LotR references, purple prose and... where is the punchline again?

    This comics is just boring. And ugly. I'm going to read the rest of this comment thread offline.

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  108. Newest XKCD is fake and gay.

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  109. Well i assume he was refering to the homoerotic tensions between sam and frodo. Or he was just the usual moron using gay as an offencive word. I don't know but i reckon it was the first one... i used to wank off to sam and frodo before i realised the legolas gimli relationship is much more fulfilling. At least legolas doesnt deny his feelings and go off and marry a female elf. Stupid sam.
    Where were we?
    mmm elves...

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  110. Charles Augustus FortescueJanuary 14, 2011 at 7:20 AM

    Gray, above, is mistaken. The character on the left does see the symbolism, as the reader is intended to. Part of the joke is that the character on the right is too self-absorbed and hung up his wish to be like Sam Gamgee to realise the wider beauty of the universe (and how special it is that his star happened to be the one that formed a nebula).

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  111. How is it fake? I'm pretty sure it's a real jpeg that he uploaded on the internets.

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  112. Well, because that's Randy on the right, and since nobody would ever hang out with him and listen to him talk like an emo, the guy on the left is obviously photoshopped in.

    Captcha: feduck—This comic is feducking boring.

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  113. http://dilbert.com/strips/comic/1990-11-21/

    Comic 847 was already done twenty years ago by a much better cartoonist. I want to say a Peanuts comic addressed this concept as well (and of course, that would have been decades ago too), but I can't find it right now.

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  114. @Anon9:13

    Is that you, Randall? Thanks for the explanation about where sugar comes from. I will avoid brushing my teeth with grain or crackers now.

    I wonder if the sorbitol (i.e. sugar) in mouthwash is metabolized by oral bacteria? Wikipedia says (most strains of) E. coli can grow in media with sorbitol. Not sure if plaque causing bacteria have different nutritional requirements. Whiskey still strikes me as a decent mouthwash.

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  115. The flow chart one from recently was pretty much the same joke as 70% of all Dilberts ever as well.

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  116. I see a pattern.

    Rob: [long terrible post]
    Critics: haha this sucks
    Rob: [long wall of text on how his horrid writing is actually brilliant because it's horrid]
    Critics: it still sucks bro
    Rob: [wall of text of NO LOL I TROL YOU ;_;]
    Bloggers: omg rob slurrrrp slurrrrp slurp

    Yup, those predictable cuttlefish are sure being led around by the nose. Baited so hard by Rob's dissertations on how his writing doesn't actually suck.

    ReplyDelete
  117. As a general rule, whoever writes the bigger wall of text is the one getting trolled.

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  118. GOOMHR, I can flip through LOTR and pull out random quotes as well.

    Also, waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa *gasps* aaaayyyyy too much text in that quote panel. I glossed over it - if you need to shrink the font to fit all your text in the panel you have too much text. TLDR that shit randy.

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  119. @chaos: There'll be plenty of orgies when I'm dead, regardless of whether my personal beliefs regarding an afterlife are true or not.

    Re 847: Cut out the last two panels, and we have a cute/hopeish sort of comic. Done.

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  120. Just so you all know: xkcd is a witty comic. Which means it involves alot of wit. I.e. you people woudn't understand it. Xkcd is hilarious and Randall rocks.

    Thank you, have a nice day.
    • Sir Ean Halezandaer Aidans || esq.

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  121. @Ravenzomg "@chaos: There'll be plenty of orgies when I'm dead, regardless of whether my personal beliefs regarding an afterlife are true or not."

    I... um. I hope you're not a part of them.

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  122. Anon 2:19

    0/10

    Blatant Plagiarism. See Me.

    cc: Trollademic Affairs

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  123. FUCK YOU 2:19 I HAVE A THOUSAND TIMES THE PERCEPTION THAT YOU WILL EVER HAVE I CAN SEE EVERY INCH OF THE SUPPOSED "WIT" IN THE SHITTY COMIC WITHOUT EVEN LOOKING AND LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING IT IS NOT WIT AT ALL HENCE MY USE OF INVERTED COMMAS EARLIER ON IT IS IN FACT DULL AND SHIT AND YOU ARE DULL AND SHIT FOR INTERPRETING IT AS WIT YOU COCKHEAD.

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  124. Hey, what happened to William Monty Hughes? He was my favorite troll, for sure...

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  125. Wow. Some very foul language here. Maybe I'll just read xkcd. It's better than listening to people argue. It 's funnier too.

    That's what's up.
    -grammernut@gmail.com

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  126. Haha, "grammer". What a fucking tit.

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  127. Forget Dilbert, this comic was done better by Timon and fucking Pumbaa in The Lion King.

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  128. I take fault with your correct spelling of "Pumbaa".

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  129. Samantha is rapidly approaching the status of "bestest" you guys

    STEP UP YOUR GAME

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  130. As common when watching stars, the two characters are sitting atop a hill. A very grassy hill. Hill. Ill. Illness. What Randy should get again. More guest comics. Less Rob posts. Dead XKCDsucks. Dead XKCD. Ravenzongs path to world CONQUERATIONISM!...

    ReplyDelete
  131. UndercoverCuddlefishJanuary 14, 2011 at 6:23 PM

    oh my god just shut up all of you

    captcha: antscron - the anti-scranton

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  132. It never ceases to amaze me how monstrously BAD Tolkien's writing is. You may find his world amazing, but the man handles words only barely better than Randall. "A thought pierces Sam like a shaft?" Even Oscar Wilde refrained from such turns of phrase.

    Of course, since the presence of orcs or aliens is a sine qua non for the nerds' literary interests, it becomes hard for them to acquaint themselves with actual literature.

    Or maybe it's the restriction to the English language? "You guys, we had like three poets and two novellists worth reading in 400 years, let's pretend Tolkien and C.S. Lewis are actual writers!"

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  133. rob you should have a guest week so that people will be whining about how much the guest writers suck and how much better your posts are

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  134. I agree wholeheartedly with Anon 6:37. No matter what his actual intentions were, I agree.

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  135. Wait, Rob. If I created a review praising Randy to the high heavens, and then sent it to you, would you publish it on this site?

    ReplyDelete
  136. UndercoverCuddlefishJanuary 14, 2011 at 10:44 PM

    @pb if jonathan swift published an essay extolling the virtues of eating children would you take it seriously

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  137. And now he's rapping in the alt text....

    Keep jumping that shark Randall I'm sure that will make people love your comic again.

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  138. Anon 6:27, guess you'd better stay away from Lord Dunsany then. Gotta tell you, though: you're really missing out.

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  139. The newest xkcd is fake and gay because, your mom.

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  140. Rob: although smitty's eyebrows were raised in shock, I prefer to think that in my pic they're raised in incredulous disdain (oddly specific, I know). My reaction is less "holy shit, REALLY?!" And more "holy shit, really".

    @anon 6:27: could not agree more. Tolkien may have bult an amazing world, but he was an awfully shitty writer. The man used words with all the careful, well-planned precision of a drunk redneck trying to hammer in a nail.

    Captcha: Brampto. Marlpton Brampto?

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  141. Tolkien made up his own languages yet didn't even know how the hell to make English work.

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  142. When I was reading the Two Towers, I honestly thought Helm's Deep was a system of caves. Failure on the part of the reader? The writer? Who knows, maybe both.

    The Silmarillion was still kick-ass, though, probably because it was stylistically a Bible so Tolkien's writing was quite appropriate.

    Captcha: Beroge. Hey, wat clas shuld I pik????

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  143. At least the movies were good.

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  144. Geez, this site is gay. U guys do realize that's not even the right comic up top. The one on xkcd.com is different. In conclusion, you're all a bunch of dipshits.

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  145. Trolling aside, valkyrie is the first one to mention my edit. So thank you <3

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  146. Holy shit dude that was like the sickest burn ever

    How do you manage to be so goddamn original

    And by original I of course mean retarded cuntfaggot

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  147. strictly different from a cunt-faggot, of course.

    Captcha: taboohip. My hips ought to be taboo.

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  148. Thanks valkrie i hadn't even clocked that was different to the comic. Sorry ravenzomg for not noticing :( lucky we have vigilent valkrie on these forums...

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  149. You know how sometimes people will diss Mozart, talking about his compositions being overly sentimental and trite and systematic? Those criticisms are only valid in most other cases because if most people tried to compose as he did they would fail miserably and produce rubbish. Mozart, on the other hand, was extraordinarily talented. He knew what he was doing and how to do it and did it to great effect.

    Tolkien isn't exactly a literary Mozart, but he's a much more talented writer than you critics seem willing to identify. Perhaps it looks hackneyed to you because so many hacks have tried to imitate him.

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  150. You are all fake and gay, as well.

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  151. So you're saying that when I say Tolkien was a crappy writer (or at the very least a writer who doesn't measure up to the praise lavished on him), I'm actually confusing Tolkien with other writers.

    Which would make sense if I was stupid enough to confuse them, except I'm not so it doesn't.

    I stopped reading Return of the King halfway through because it was so goddamn boring the way he wrote it. Flat, uninteresting, not suspensful or gripping in the slightest. It was only with concerted effort (and the fact that I read literally anything put in front of me) that I managed to grind through to the end. Honestly not worth it.

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  152. Um no, where the fucking shitraping hell are you getting that first sentence from Ves?

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  153. "You know how sometimes people will diss Mozart, talking about his compositions being overly sentimental and trite and systematic?"

    No, not really. Someone who understands the slightest bit of musical history knows that *some* of Mozart's composition where done in a hurry, or without an explicit attempt at grand originality, because in those days artists didn't have the massive egos of today's. (That all started with Beethoven, but he was fully justified.)

    However, anyone saying these things about Mozart's 50 or so best-known works -- his "masterpieces" -- has simply not listened to them.

    On the other hand, Tolkien's "masterpieces", the LotR trilogy, are boring as fuck. My experience was exactly the same as Ves's: boring shit, by the end of T2T didn't care about anyone anymore, was rooting for all of the good guys to die.

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  154. @Anon555: The only characters I remember feeling for at all were the orcs. I really sympathized with Gorbag and... Shargrat? Whatever, point is I truly hoped [knowing it was in vain, obviously] that everything went all right for them and that that tricksy paralyzed hobbit didn't get away from them. "Stop, stop!" I'd cry, "Just be friends and we can all get through this together!" I was really rooting for Gorbag there.

    Gorbag: Truly Tolkien's greatest hero.

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  155. his name was grishnak you tea-bagger

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  156. Aw, did some poor and helpless illiterate coward mistake Grishnakh for Gorbag? I know reading is really, really hard, but maybe we just need to find something more appropriate for your skill level.

    Happy reading, and we'll talk to you when you graduate from Middle School, mmk? ...Well, probably not.

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  157. No, I'm done. Sorry, Rob, your fantasy will remain just that.

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  158. whatever. gorbag? MORE LIKE WHOREBAG

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  159. but hobbits are small

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  160. in a roll in the lard lived a robbit

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  161. why are you devoting years of your life just to criticizing someone else's work? you could just... you know... find something you enjoyed, or... get a hobby?

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  162. UndercoverCuddlefishJanuary 15, 2011 at 11:40 PM

    what leap of logic was involved when you convinced yourself that this was something other than a hobby

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  163. @UndercoverCuddlefish

    the billions of dollars of ad revenue gained from those ads that used to be on the side

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  164. I gave up when they got to that pub in the first book what a bunch of boring shit

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  165. Uh, no Ves. I was saying that you might be lumping him together with hacks because a large body of the hacks that have arisen since have written similarly. Then you may use the same critical stance used to dismiss those writers and feel that the same criticisms can be applied just as effectively to Tolkien despite him being far more competent. You would likely be particularly compelled to do so if it didn't maintain its narrative drive for you.

    Additionally, the fact that you found the work boring does not prove anything- it's a valid subjective position and nobody should think less of you for it, but the failure to hold your attention is not a conclusive indictment of the work's literary value. Multitudes feel that way about the true masters and feel the opposite way about the true hacks.

    Anon 5:55: you repeated what I said about Mozart. People who think they have listened but have not really listened will strike out his entire body of work on the basis that I mentioned before. You are lucky if you have never met the type, but I often have and Mozart is one of their favourite victims.

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  166. So basically Tolkien's been gentrified to hell and back ten times over by shitty people?

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  167. @Frodo's Muppet, no one denies that Tolkien created an incredibly vast and detailed world. However he writes badly, meaning his use of language is ineffective, his sentences awkward. This is important since the story he wants to tell is 1000+ pages long.

    If you think that is completely subjective, read Rob's rant "But all art is subjective".

    I'd also add that Tolkien's characters are flat and uninteresting. They are either racial stereotypes (just of races that don't exist) or idealized versions of humans, their minds occupied with nothing but grandiose concerns or evil scheming. As with xkcd, if you disagree, you have probably not read authors who do better.

    It's fine to enjoy LotR. What's probably in the background of the vociferous complaints here (much like with xkcd) is the level of adoration and unreasonable size of Tolkien's fanbase.

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  168. @Frodo's Muppet, I remain unsure what the analogy to Mozart is. People who diss Mozart, in all likelihood, do not enjoy western "classical" music and are not familiar with the genre's canon.

    But probably most people who criticize Tolkien's writing enjoy literature and are familiar with other writers from various periods, including Tolkien's.

    I really don't think that the criticism here is "other people ran the fantasy genre into the ground". I myself haven't read any fantasy BUT Tolkien.

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  169. I had the misfortune of reading The Lord of the Ring in Japanese originally. Holy. Shit.

    In English it's much more readable and also many times shorter.

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  170. is the japanese translation even more racist?

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  171. http://plover.net/~bonds/tolkien1.html

    Enjoy.

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  172. yes we all know the guy who think writing ability is something fixed at birth hates tolkien, thanks for nothing arthur

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  173. I think once again, the alt-text would've made a better comic.

    Here's the comic in a nutshell: "Inspirational message taken from a well-known nerd text; apply nerd science to the message."

    the problem is the comic itself was long, meandering and pointlessly aiming to tug at your sympathy for the main character. An Herculean task considering he has no history or consistency within the comic. The punchline comes from how the message he wound up taking from the events didn't have to deal with inspiration or wisdom, but with incomprehensible gibberish-- I mean! SCIENCE!!! However, I think the better punchline would've been "Hopeful because of the perceived eternity of stars/Hopeless because even stars die." because it's simple and one idea flows from the other. It doesn't derive its humor from non sequitur like the comic itself does.

    I think it's funny how much nerds defend Tolkein. I can't imagine a person reading through the Lord of the Rings and coming away with any impression other than that they were utter shit. I'd excuse them for inspiring much better works but... Not as much as Robert E. Howard or Michael Moorecock did. Tolkein himself was inspired by the much better Nibelung Saga to an embarrassing extent.

    I find Tolkein self-evidently bad in the same way the Star Wars prequel films are self-evidently bad. You don't need a guide to tell you why they were bad, you just need to read it.

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  174. Criticizing Tolkien is like criticizing one of the greatest musical geniuses who ever lived. I'd like to see you come up with a character as complex and in-depth as Tom Bombadil, or as morally ambiguous a villain as Sauron!

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  175. I keep wanting to stand up to defend Tolkein on nerd-principle, but then I remember that I didn't even actually finish Return of the King... so I guess they couldn't have been that good.

    However, I have to give him points for actually getting military tactics of the time right. Which, strangely, was one of the things the movie threw out.

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  176. Of what time? Of a time that doesn't exist? If you mean of Tolkein's time, well I'm sure the military tactics of his time were very modern compared to the ones he wrote about.

    Did anyone else find The Hobbit to be a pretty good read but couldn't make it through Fellowship?

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  177. If Randy ever read real books he could have quoted, oh I don't know, pretty much any actual poem about a star there too. Keats' "Bright Star" would actually fit the comic better and make the punchline funnier (the poem is about how a star is eternal and unchanging, so the punchline could actually have been foreshadowed instead of being a result of Randy's random jamming of the cock of science into the inappropriate orifices of normal human interaction).

    Captcha: Faing. I am woonded by the faings of love, let me quote Tolkeen to tell you how I feal.

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  178. It's possible he hasn't even read any Tolkien and just stumbled upon the quote somewhere.

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  179. @Anon 2:22 - that's most likely what he did.

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  180. I remember enjoying the Silmarillion, the Hobbit, {gap where Fellowship would have been}, and the parts of The Two Towers and Return of the King with hobbits. For some reason I just couldn't give a shit about Legsy/Gimli/Aragorn when they were running around solving national crises or whatever. But hobbits captured by orcs? omg when is the next hobbit chapter!!?!?!?!

    Captcha: Imeridef. Pretty sure that was an elf somewhere in the first book.

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  181. @ Anon 1:56 - Yeah, I'm the same way. I really liked The Hobbit and enjoyed reading it, but I tried to read Fellowship of the Ring and couldn't get through it.

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  182. OMG I'm infatuated with this Stephen Bond person, who Arthur linked us to.

    He bashes Ender's Game, which I'm pretty sure is a favorite with Randy, and coincidentally with another oblivious, self-centered jerk I know personally.

    http://plover.net/~bonds/ender.html

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  183. in fact he has rendered this site unnecessary

    http://plover.net/~bonds/asdf.html

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  184. No wait, he actually bashes everything in existence, ever. He thinks that all films, books, lyrics and breakfast foods are lacking in irony, that litmus test of sophistication and intelligence. (He actually describes irony in these words somewhere on his site.)

    I guess even a moronic clock is right twice a day?

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  185. @Anonymous1:56

    Trying too hard: you're doing it.

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  186. Charles Augustus FortescueJanuary 17, 2011 at 3:09 AM

    People who criticise Tolkien for the writing style or the lack of complex characters are missing the point. One needs to realise that the Lord of the Rings is not a novel. Tolkien isn't trying to write The Brothers Karamasov. His influences are myths and sagas that predate the modern novel by hundreds of years. On those terms, "Lord" is a great success.

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  187. BULLSHIT, all these myths and sagas are noticeably more adult, with more ambiguous villains, non-childish relatioships, sexual themes etc.

    Greek mythology is every bit as gripping as Dostoievsky. People weren't 2-dimensional idiots before the advent of the "modern novel".

    But hey, just because you clearly haven't read any actual mythology doesn't mean you can't form and defend your stupid fanboyish opinion, right?

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  188. "Greek mythology is every bit as gripping as Dostoievsky"

    hey fuck you, mythology can be a good read

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