96 1983

Final Assault Part 1

The vote I've been plugging should adjoin Friday's post with how the week's strips are laying out. As long as I have no hiccups pushing out the fat-guys-in-a-little-car panels. :P

96 thoughts on “Final Assault Part 1

      1. You don’t think Tarra’s good enough to hit him on the ricochet? I could see her making a twofer and hit part of Wheelchair Ninja’s traction equipment (can’t remember real name, the thing around his head/neck/spine) and knocking a rivet into his eye with the musket ball ricochet and getting Backwards Burglar’s eye.

        Seriously, watching Tarra at the firing range is kinda’ like watching a person doing trick pool shots, but with guns. I heard after she reinforces her apartment a bit better she’s planning on never swatting flies with less than a 9mm.

    1. My First Lasso, My First Musket, I mean, what’s next? My First Crew-Served Belt-Fed Machine Gun? My First Claymore Mine? Maybe there will be some official Gump Wars merch afoot–I figure the Padme ought to slow down a few fat guys in tiny Escalades.

      1. The “My First Crew-Served Belt-Fed Machine Gun” was awesome but make sure you get the kids with “My First Bunker Buster Rocket Launchers” before they can get a shot off. Also the kids with “My First Flamethrowers” are best taken out before they get too close.

        Still waiting for “Dealing with My First case of PTSD” to come out.

        1. HEY HEY HEY!!!

          Have we forgotten about the Powerwheels U.S. Army edition Apache Helicopters, the U.S. Navy CH-53E Super Stallion Helicopters, U.S. Marine Corps F/A-18D Hornets and the My First U.S. Air Force AC-130H Spectre Special Operations Wing Close Air Support aircraft.

        2. I’d always get the other kids by choosing “My First Flamethrower” in a dry field on a windy day. Though my favorite was getting my brother to play with “My First Straighjacket,” because Houdini he was not.

      2. If that’s the same musket they (used to?) sell at Disneyland it can be converted to shoot real lead balls… my kind of toy!

        1. It’s a real product and an interior of a toy store in Christmas, so should be ok fair use-wise. If not in general, could make it a Dandelion Redd Rhyder BB gun instead and that’d definitely be in the clear.

  1. Dammit, Rusche! Now I’ve got Chris Farley singing in my head!

    Fat guuuuyyy in a litt-le caaaaar….fat guuuuuyyy in a litt-le ca-aaaar….

      1. Aww, but I’d much rather hear about how you almost jettisoned your iced tea by unapproved methods. :D Can’t get that kind of background from a +1.

    1. MMMMMMmpppppphhhhhh!!!

      MMMMMMmmpppppphhhhh!!!

      MMMMmmmmpppaaaaaaannnnneee!!! GET ME OFF OF THIS CRAZY THING!!! I CAN ONLY GO IN REVVVEERRSSSMMMMMMMPPPPH!!!

      MMMMMMmmpppppphhhhh!!!

      MMMMMMMMMPPPPPppaaaaaaaiiiiiieeeeee!!! *forklift bonk*

  2. Up shot, I’d often wondered what “Toys” would have been like with less Robin Williams and more attractive blondes, and now I know.

  3. Juniper looks so sad. I mean obviously she knows who Quinn is but either isn’t sure what to do/say or is unsure how it will be taken if she does make an effort. Or both. My only gripe with this strip is I can’t really tell which way she’s facing in panel 4. I’m pretty sure she turned her back on Quinn but I’m not positive. It looks like based on her hair she’s turned away. But the framing infers that she’s still facing Quinn. But that aside, the last panel is pure awesome.

    Though I will also add that the sunrise coloring you have going on is amazing. Totes amazeballs.

        1. So on the sliding scale of effort versus discomfort Juniper has decided that venturing (hungover) into the realm of the deep nerds without her mobility scooter is preferrable to standing around, smoking and talking to Quinn. That says A LOT about how much she does not want to talk to Quinn about this.

        2. Well, the Walking Dead Lego sets were stated in the van as for Amper & Tag, and Tag is the top guess as to Juniper’s biological child. Possibly she got some crap from Ginger about not being there to help even grab a gift for him and she was going in after the smoke break. At that point, Quinn’s presence could’ve also been a reminder that that set off Ginger’s voice in her head.

          Pure, unsubstantiated speculation about things that were off-panel, but a possibility.

          I’m leaning toward your interpretation of Quinn making her uncomfortable and wanting to vacate her presence, but with the idea that going into the toy store was what she was going to have to do after the cigarette anyway as opposed to solely a means to avoid Quinn. So Quinn’s presence hastened her journey into the fray, but didn’t drive her into it when she was going to stay out.

        3. Or maybe Juniper has decided that the only way to redeem herself is on the field of battle like some of the more hardcore warrior cultures. “Fuck these words, time to gets my slaying on.” And yes, I concede that it is very unlikely that Juniper is an Amazonian warrior but it would be a fun twist to see and would help her keep more in line the with rest of her sisters “erf to wack ratio.”

          And don’t sweat the speculation, it’s what fans do. We’re just overachievers.

        4. But Mr. Rainbow wasn’t in the van. And even if things were said to her before this night, how much would have been recalled under a drunken stupor?

        5. Not in the van, which was probably less than 90 minutes even with Black Friday traffic, but she did just spend the majority of 10 hours (when not getting thrown out of bathroom stalls by Anise) with an irritated Ginger. However, I was more assuming that Ginger said something to her about it as she pushed her off the scooter.

        6. Because the visual take on this idiom was left in the movie “Airplane” where specially trained people can react to the proper noir effects such a movement would have.

          That,” And Leon is getting laaaaarrrrrger. “

  4. Well, it has been established that Juniper makes the wrong decision pretty much every time, so we shouldn’t be surprised she bailed out on what we can assume would have been an apology. Maybe she’ll change her mind, but for now she wussed out.

    Why on Earth would Tarra need to see ‘the white of their eyes’ to snipe the bastards? She must have perfect aim, therefor probably could have sniped them from clear across the store through a number of shelves and aisles while they were hidden in a fortified bunker while she was swinging from a rope like Indiana Jones. Someone just wanted to use that line like a BAMF.

    1. A sniper is only as good as their rifle. I’m going to theorize that “My First Musket” probably lacks the precision for the advanced sniping scenario you’ve described.

        1. That makes sense. Plus “My First Musket” probably doesn’t have enough power in it to hit more elaborate marks, so it would be a shame to waste a shot due to inferior equipment.

        2. That’s why she should’ve picked up “My First 30-06” with the free “My First Collarbone Immobilization kit”. No need to pack the powder then.

        3. The collar kit comes with “My first Mosin Nagant with steel buttplate.” If you want a gun to teach you how to deal with recoil look no further.

        4. That does have much cheaper ammo (steel core ammo at that) and they are quite durable, but you know the kids wouldn’t clean them as well as they should and that ammo’s corrosive, so you’d end up with more customer complaints.

          The other problem is considering the history buff tendency of our first graders, you know the kid who gets a Mosin at 6 will want to emulate the Russians and be angling for an AK-47 at 8, and 8 is just too young for a semi-auto rifle.

        5. You distract them from the AK with the Mosin Sniper upgrade, fun for all ages.

          I love my Mosin sniper.

  5. I was just thinking that if these “Black Friday” events occur every year retailers must just live in fear of the Buckingham girls coming to their store and leaving carnage in their wake. Just imagine the insurance premiums! I’m sorry sir normally our yearly premium for insuring your store would be this! But since your store is in the “Buckingham zone” your rate will now be $$$$$

    1. “Yes, sir, this is our standard Acts of Buckingham insurance policy. It covers glass breakage, neon signage replacement, and anything involving improvised weaponry from random items of merchandise. Of course, it’s substantially more expensive than our standard policies, but we guarantee one hour claims response and settlements within three days. We’re very used to the kind of damage that a Buckingham can do if set loose on a store. They’re like the Dirty Pair, only three and a half of them.”

      1. Yes, we have all manner of coverage for legal fees due to Santa flashings included. That’s just standard in these premiums.

        Wait a minute…what? Flying poisonous mutant vermin? Nope. Definitely not covered. We recommend you just burn your store to the ground. Make it look like an electrical short caused it.

  6. “Yeahhhhh.”

    Whoa, careful Juni, them’s fightin’ words.

    Now Quinn’s just going to stand there and let that little ball of anger she kept in fester and grow, until Cinnamon walks over and says something, anything, doesn’t matter what really, and then Quinn will transform into Quinn Prime, a being manifest of pure rage, that will consume Cinnamon in an instant. Moments later, Quinn will awaken, dazed and without any memory of what happened, and wondering why Cinnamon left her shoes nearby.

    Okay, like most of my predictions that probably won’t happen. But a man can dream.

    1. Yeah, I’m agreeing with you on the part of now I’m thinking Quinn recognized and noticed Juniper.

      Now I disagree about Quinn Prime going dormant on her own, there’s a lot of anger at a lot more than Juniper stored up there. I think they’ll have to bring Ian out to make her flee in shame before she transforms back to normal.

  7. Juniper!! Step on the cigarette it might cause a fire!!

    haha jk.

    Tarra with a musket?? There must be some safety protocols forbidding this. however..Tarra IS perfect so she probably got around those protocols. scary stuff!! lol

    1. They are in Florida. There are minimal safety standards on toys. If this was California there would be three SWAT teams already involved and Tarra would still have hostages.

  8. NO! NO! No no no no!!! Juni no!! You don’t have to accept it where you are, you can start now, don’t give up before even trying! Juniper! JUNIPER!? Juuuunipeeeeer!?

    On another note, Tarra, bad. Killing innocents is out of the question. Wheelchair ninjas and backwards burglars fine. However, not the innocent, even if they ticked you off on black friday. Tsk Tsk Tarragon the Paragon, tsk tsk.

    1. MMMMMMMmmmmeeeey!

      Do you know I’d rather be dead then watching my own butt, right? It’s that damn ponytail of hers.

      o) |__o) . . . .

      I never did learn how to duck. damn kids always hit me with goose instead of duck. I hated those kids, and it’s all HER FAULMMMMMPH

    2. If it makes you feel better, small piercing projectiles can go through knees, wrists, and Powerwheel Escalade wheels/axels too. Not just lethal places. With the bank robber surviving a 180 neck twist, I’m not seeing her causing a death (even with something that normally would) any time soon.

  9. For some reasons the panels I’m most drawn to looking at every time I peek back here are panels two and three. Just her face as she looks at the cigarette and flicks it away (presumably having just lit it) leads me to think two things:

    1) She’s debating whether it’s worth sticking around to get to smoke her cigarette if it means being around Quinn and feeling awkward and deciding it isn’t, or…

    2) Having Quinn there is making her a bit more self-reflective and she just decided “…nah, I don’t need this cigarette.” It’s a baby step, but at least it’s something in the right direction.

    …also, I’m not 100% sure Quinn is giving her the cold shoulder. I mean, she isn’t going to just cheerfully start a conversation with someone who hurt her years ago (especially considering how she holds a grudge), but she isn’t turning around and lashing out at Juniper like she’s prone to doing.

    It might be combination cold shoulder and “okay, let’s see what she’s going to say” before she decides to do anything. But for Quinn, not having it be pure, raw hostility and screaming is also a pretty big step forward.

    1. I can’t tell if Juniper’s talking quietly enough Quinn can’t hear, if Quinn is ignoring just to generally be antisocial to a strange woman reeking of alcohol (assuming panhandler or something), or if Quinn knows who she is and is ignoring her deliberately.

      I’m leaning towards the last one, though I didn’t think that last comic.

      1. I agree with you there. Quinn’s facial expression isn’t NEARLY bitchy enough to be deliberately ignoring the girl who stole her boyfriend. But passively ignoring the messy lady standing by you muttering random words? Totally.

      2. I’m thinking that they are facing the sun rise, therefore, okay, I just nixed the ocean breeze possibility that would waft odors away, just because Lakeland is in the middle of that pointy thing that juts out from Georgia.

        Florida is kind of breezy most of the time, isn’t it?

  10. I’m almost surprised Tarra doesn’t have two muskets, one on each side with her hair holding them steady.

    Also, I wish I lived in this world. Not only did the hoverboard get sold, but the lawyers have been beaten back on frivolous lawsuits a whole lot more than I’d ever dreamed to allow My First Musket. Granted, I’d consider that a bad idea if it were a real product, but I’m pretty jealous of what that world can accomplish with that much less effort spent fighting lawsuits for every last little thing.

    Now I’m also betting the O’Jack’s coffee cups had the following printed on them: “Warning! Coffee is hot and if you spill it on yourself while we can still see you, we WILL laugh at you, because it WILL be funny to everyone else. You have been warned.”

      1. Yeah, that’d be one I’d actually like. The ones I actually see sometimes make me laugh too, but they also make me a little sad at the same time.

        I’m anticipating for the day I walk up to a gallon of distilled water and see “Ingredients: Water, and probably a very small amount of dust because we’re not perfect, but you’ll have a lot more in there once you open this, we’re really sorry about that” and then half to three-quarters of the warnings from dhmo.org , necessitating all surface area covered with warning sticker so you can no longer visually determine how full it is.

        1. Since we’re already at it: How long until we get hovering holo projections that warn about the possible contents and health hazards of air?

        2. I can’t decide if those would go through everything they’d noticed trace amounts of in the last day (“Horse feces commonly contain N million bacteria per gram”) or if they’d concentrate on the dangers of oxygen (deterioration, I think caustic to some compounds, and absolutely a fire hazard).

  11. I sure hope that “My First Musket” packs more wallop than the toy musket I had as a kid. When you pulled the trigger, the hammer would come down and pop the caps crammed in the pan, which communicated with the barrel via a small hole. Then the little cork musket ball would come out the muzzle end, if you tilted the weapon slightly forward so it could roll slowly out.

    1. Our toy musket was similar to yours (without the hole by the cap or a ball), but it did definitely pack a wallop. That’s primarily because when my younger brother got mad he’d seek mechanical advantage to even the age and size difference, and sometimes he was angry enough to ignore the Blast-A-Ball’s (which can leave a pretty good welt when they connect being swung full force at you by an enraged five-year-old, surprisingly enough) and go for the musket. I was always more careful when he grabbed the musket and got pretty good at catching it on the back swing.

    2. Yours sounds like the one I got at Disneyland years ago. As I stated above, it could be (easily) set up to shoot real lead balls with enough oomph to penetrate 1/2″ plywood (or a car door, but we won’t go into that here…)!

      Happiest Place on Earth, indeed…

      1. I think she realizes that she’s in the running for “Only sister not to break the law this year during Black Friday” and is trying to keep that title.

  12. OH DANG.

    There should be a statement on the “My First Musket” Box that 6 AA batteries are required, but not included.

    I mean, that’d be funny, wouldn’t it?

  13. Heh, my first musket, because children should learn early on that you may not always hit the target. Because at range, smooth bores are a piece of crap.

  14. A thought. These are deep nerds, right?

    I mean, we have Mr. Canon, Fake Spider-Man, and … The other guy.

    On the other side we have a cosplaying teenager, Lara Croft, and Ellie’s … “assets.”

    The fact these nerds are able to keep it together long enough to chase them without stammering, breaking into sweats, and having asthma attacks might be the biggest miracle of this story. The whole situation with them could be resolved with Tarra or Ellie saying “pleeeeease?” in a sweet but slightly sexy voice.

    1. I half wondered if that wasn’t Juniper’s role in the plan. One breathy “Hello, Boys,” ought to work like caltrops in the path of horse cavalry.

      1. See I’d been assuming Ginger was sending Ellie to the toy store for a honeypot operation.

        On the topic of the hoverboard goal as cognitive distraction from your comment below, there can also be an association of, “Nah, she’s way too hot to be doing anything but screwing with me”-sort of thoughts helping them resist too. Juniper might be helpful in that vein as them being convinced she wants something else, but I don’t think that’d help anything with Ginger and no reason to do something unpleasant if it’s just going to make things worse with family.

        I could see Juniper taking a page out of Anise’s book and flashing as a distraction, but otherwise I’m seeing her doing a low energy sort of assist, like tripping some of them as they go by.

    2. Of course, bear in mind that the nerds in question really aren’t chasing the ladies; they’re chasing the hoverboards. A key point of cognitive dissonance that will likely help the deep nerds out.

  15. Hmmm, while Juniper might be listed as ‘little miss letdown’ it looks like she has some degree of perception to her. This page and the previous ones seem to hint at her noticing or picking up on something, just not sure what exactly.

    This arc has been very enjoyable so far, keep it up ^ ^

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