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Eric: This is what they should show at the intermission of Kurosawa movies.

Order of the Stick

(From Order of the Stick! Click on the thumbnail for full sized tale of death and redemption, eternally retold!)

The first time I ever talked about the Order of the Stick, all the way back in 2004, it was to compliment Rich Burlew's cast page. Oh sure, Burlew's comic was superior. But his cast page was practically best of breed. Go look. Drink deep of a cast page that is fun to read and conveys the essence of the characters and their interactions in 11 happy panels.

Today, Order of the Stick has an intermission strip. And it's just plain brilliant.

For one thing, it blends two familiar things perfectly together. And merges them with the D&D tropes perfectly. For another, you can practically hear the theme music playing in the background as you read it, and that's just plain cool. And for a third, it's actually funny.

And that's all I have to say about it. I'm only going on into this paragraph to help push the textual spacing down so that the thumbnail doesn't intrude into the last snark. So... um. Dude. Hope you win the lottery or something.

Please, enjoy.

Posted by Eric Burns-White at April 6, 2006 1:00 PM

Comments

Comment from: roninkakuhito [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 1:38 PM

Wow, I am glad that I'm not the only one who thought this was awesome.

Comment from: nedlum [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 1:45 PM

A hundered strips between this and the last time you actually commented on OotS (and fifty eight since you linked without commentary), many of them showing some interesting charecter development (I thought, anyway) and this is the one you chose to link to?

Well... I can't blame you all that much. I mean, they just killed the true star of the strip.

Comment from: HydrogenGuy [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 2:27 PM

"We have become like unto a tiny refreshing GODS!"

With that line, Rich Burlew has earned his way into paradise.

Comment from: Doug [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 2:51 PM

This touches the rarified heights of genius. HydrogenGuy beat me to commenting upon the quote that Brought The Funny to point of me almost falling off my chair. However, the clincher was Milkdud's dying request.

About the only thing that could improve this is for someone to animate it and have it shown in theatres.

Eric? Send the man a biscuit, please?

Comment from: Mr Myth [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 3:21 PM

Burlew has really been at the top of his game lately . Almost every strip in the last few week's has really worked for me - despite running the gamut from some more serious plot pieces, to standard joke fare, to something inspired like this. And that's pretty awesome, in my book.

Comment from: Aerin [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 3:36 PM

I was really hoping you would snark this one. It's absolute genius. And since OotS has finished a story arc, I'm now anxiously awaiting Book 2, since Books 0 and 1 are among the only webcomics merchandise I own.

And I agree with Doug: this MUST be animated and shown in theatres.

Comment from: Rothul [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 7:41 PM

Just to randomly throw out something I found hilarious:

"Milk Dudes. NO!"

MILK DUDES. Highest of high comedy

Comment from: thomas [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 6, 2006 9:58 PM

Thanks Rothul - I'm glad I'm not the only who picked up on that... it was a 'Surely, he means Milk DUDS' *ponder* 'Upon reflection 'Milk Dudes' is far superior. Well done.'

Comment from: Arujei [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 2:24 AM

I have to agree with HydrogenGuy. "We have become like unto tiny refreshing GODS!" is now my favorite line ever spoken, ever. I'm sorry hippies, but this is just brilliant. And by God, yes! This man deserves a biscuit more thouroughly then ever before!

Comment from: miyaa [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 4:32 AM

I bet those three would have wiped the floor on Aqua Hunger Team Force. And tore their faces off.

And Milk Dudes will be avenged! (Also known as Whoppers. Tasty balls of chocolate puff.)

Comment from: Bahimiron [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 7:40 AM

I loved this strip. Well and truly.

Though I kinda doubt the veracity of Pizza's suggestion that cinema pizza is in any way nourishing. Have you ever tasted that stuff? It's like someone cooked a Red Baron for 20 minutes in the microwave and forgot to take it out of the box first.

Oh, and person above me? Milk Dudes ain't Whoppers, no way, no how!

Comment from: KennyCelican [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 11:57 AM

Of course, he would use the theme song that I've only ever heard run before the Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Juxtapositioning OOTS and RHPS forever in my poor abused brain.

Comment from: HumanSockPuppet [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 12:16 PM

Aspiring webtoonists can only dream of achieving this level of funny. Bravo, I say.

Comment from: Matt Buchwald [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 2:03 PM

I personally like the last request of Milk Dudes. That had me chuckling more than anything else in the strip.

Also, I don't think you properly planned for my 1680px wide laptop screen. It's still dipping into the previouis snark.

Comment from: Eric Burns [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 2:33 PM

Also, I don't think you properly planned for my 1680px wide laptop screen. It's still dipping into the previouis snark.

Oh, I planned for it all right. I sat right here and thought "wow. Some people will have THE MOST INCREDIBLE MONITORS KNOWN TO MAN and they might still have an issue."

Then, mind numbing jealousy formed a hard coating of pettiness and I went with it. ;)

Comment from: Brendan [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 5:03 PM

I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times...

THERE IS NO ACUTE IN "LATTE."

Comment from: Zeekar [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 5:57 PM

'THERE IS NO ACUTE IN "LATTE."'

Well, sure - not in Italian. And it's not mandated in English, but it is a convention of traditional English spelling that non-silent final E's get an acute to indicate the fact that they're non-silent.

It's one of those things that's not done much anymore with the ASCII-centric nature of most modern text. Kinda like putting a diaresis over the I in "naive" or the second O in "cooperate". But it's perfectly valid.

Anyway, I agree that this OOTS was Teh Awesomeness. I do wonder about the lyrics change, though. Would there really have been any sort of copyright concern if he'd used the real ones?

Comment from: Cliff S. [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 6:13 PM

Then, mind numbing jealousy formed a hard coating of pettiness and I went with it. ;)
Huh. I thought you were a bastard-coated bastard with bastard filling.

Anyhoo, I'd like to also add the mad props to Rich's output lately. The previous strip (#300) is especially awesome in it's splash-pageity goodness.

Comment from: roninkakuhito [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 10:18 PM

miyaa
Milk Dudes are a play on milk duds.
Milk duds are adequately named. They are sugary nastyness coated in what would otherwise have been chocolatey goodness.
Whoppers are fairly decent pail reflections of the one true Farmstore Malted Milk Ball.
(Believe me, if you haven't had a malted milk ball the size of a golf ball with multiple layers of sweet flakey chocolate, then you haven't had a malted milk ball. Farm Stores are the best places to find them. Whoppers are nice, but SFMMBs are candy.

Comment from: Egak [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 7, 2006 11:10 PM

Just a heads up, Zortic (http://www.zortic.com/) is in the middle of a prolonged Websnark reference.

Comment from: Robotech_Master [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 8, 2006 12:39 AM

I pointed out this strip to our local indy cinema, the Moxie, which has a pre-movie slideshow that is a riotous parody of the banal slideshows most major theaters show. ("Movie trivia: in what movie was this famous line uttered... 'Hello.'") If they can get permission to use it, that strip would make a great addition to their slideshows.

Comment from: William_G [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 8, 2006 11:03 AM

Burlew has really been at the top of his game lately

This may come as a shock to some, but I'm in agreement.

That's why everyone should work towards getting him a WCCA this year.

Comment from: Alexis Christoforides [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 8, 2006 10:21 PM

Burlew has really been at the top of his game lately

But when, exactly, was he not top of his game? OOtS is, like, Nukees-consistent.

Comment from: Nentuaby [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 8, 2006 11:47 PM

Except OotS is consistently hilarious, whereas Nukees is consistently just good enough to keep you from going to all that effort of deleting your bookmark.

Comment from: Rafilar [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 12, 2006 1:27 AM

So, more like Schlock-consistent?

Comment from: Nentuaby [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 12, 2006 5:01 PM

That's a better way to put it, yeah.

Comment from: kellandros [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 12, 2006 5:43 PM

Looking at Monday's strip, and Haley's response to the doctor's diagnosis of her condition almost makes me want to de-cryptogram her previous speech. Which of course assumes that this is just letter substitution...

Comment from: Aerin [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 12, 2006 10:52 PM

It is just letter substitution. I was going to decrypt it, until I wandered into the forums and discovered that the work had been done for me.

Comment from: miyaa [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 13, 2006 1:48 AM

1. Re: Milk balls. I grew up on a family farm, and thus had multible contact with "Farm Stores" (Tractor Supply Company, Town and County, Orschelns, rural town shops, etc.), and I have never had a milk ball that you described. On the other hand, I spent a good year in Thailand (where my mom is from) and there Whoppers were like one of the most popular imported candies there. (Althrough banana candies have a very fond place for me.) I really should google for Farm Store Milk Balls.

2. See, I had thought the cryptic message was in the same way that people had thought that the Garfield strips were better sans actual thinking from Garfield (which, honestly, I don't see. But that's another topic for another April Fool's Day.). Besides, we all know Haley is trying to save up the money to bail out her Dad. At this point, I'd expect Haley to tell Elan, either for a night's of sex, or just because he's a cute male blonde bard idiot (which is redundant on a whole a lot of sterotypical levels). Either way, her secret is going to explode at some point.

3. There's a diaresis in "Cooperate?" (Or "Coƶoperate?") Dude!

Comment from: Aerin [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at April 13, 2006 3:05 AM

It's entirely possible that Haley has yet another secret, though. The commentary in the first book alludes to another similarity between Haley and the demon chick from the Linear Guild that hasn't been revealed yet. Plus, I think that Burlew recognizes that there's not as much dramatic potential in revealing a secret that the audience already knows as there is in pulling something that no one will expect.

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