Comic 317 - Tank 2

31st May 2012, 9:41 PM in Bouillabaisse
Average Rating: 5 (4 votes) Rate this comic
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Author Notes:

view 31st May 2012, 9:41 PM edit delete

Slime tendrils are not easy to do... but there's not too many pages of them, at least.


cattservant 31st May 2012, 9:43 PM edit delete reply
Esteban has retractable cleats!
JasperWB 31st May 2012, 9:50 PM edit delete reply
I think you drew the tendrils fine. Quite ominous looking there in the last panel. So is black arrow a code word and that slime is the nasty XVT, or are they going to deploy some XVT to counter that evil slime?
cattservant 31st May 2012, 9:58 PM edit delete reply
The latter, I think, but I wouldn't put anything of monetary value on it!
view 31st May 2012, 10:06 PM edit delete reply
Well, you have enough information to figure it out in detail.
cattservant 31st May 2012, 10:22 PM edit delete reply
Spider Tanks designed to destroy bio-weapons. This tank taken over by slime tendril bio-weapon at some time in the past. STBW content to hide out peacefully until Hans crushes it's 'tender bits'. Now very upset. Question is: is it being defensive or will it become overtly aggressive? Does it have enough intellect to make the distinction?

Or is there an Unanticipated Vector involved?*

*(It always gets you in De-tails!)
JasperWB 31st May 2012, 10:28 PM edit delete reply
I'm afraid to make guesses. I get tired of looking a fool...

But if I had to, my guess would be that if there was any chance of the muck being XVT they would know and not just let Hans start fucking with it. Since Jim believed there to be a kind of fungus in there, I believe that was this "black arrow" stuff, either misinterpreted or activated by Hans crushing it (spores got released maybe?). XVT is a bio weapon so I think it is probably the only way to kill "black arrow", maybe even what XVT was originally designed to do in the first place
cattservant 31st May 2012, 10:47 PM edit delete reply
I agree. Consider what Jim said (Page 205; panel 7) and (Page 206; panel 1) and what Waverly and Hans said on (Page 96; panels 1-4).
JasperWB 31st May 2012, 11:04 PM edit delete reply
Wow. The page 96 one. Maybe...I /am/ right. But...but THAT'S IMPROBABLE!
cattservant 31st May 2012, 11:09 PM edit delete reply
You can always stand on your clock!

And they probably have a lot of XVT on hand because they have been removing it from the local environment for years. (Page 93; panel 2)
view 31st May 2012, 11:23 PM edit delete reply
No, I'll give you a hint: Jim is staggeringly stupid sometimes.
cattservant 31st May 2012, 11:30 PM edit delete reply
Biology is on the fringes of his expertise then?
I'm still not convinced that IT is entirely 'evil monster'...
The average intellectual level in Nowheresville is quite high. Perhaps there will be some thinking before acting once the initial adrenaline wears off.

"No" = UV?
JasperWB 31st May 2012, 11:36 PM edit delete reply
Well...he must have overlooked something so simple or obvious his brain just discounted it. All I can think of is it /was/ XVT in there because it was residue mud from where the tank sat and they admitted they did extensive cleanup in the earth there. Which means that mud in the actual tank was not clean and was infested with the stuff. Also means Mary was lucky not to have been killed during the romp they had where the tank dripped on her...

Wait...did the tank power up from Hans? It sapped his system when it started doing damage to him? I feel his specific grip did something to it, and not just from the "grip" itself.
cattservant 31st May 2012, 11:46 PM edit delete reply
I think Jim was telling Esteban to go get some XVT.
And precisely because there were no apparent ill effects from those mud drips then, or when they first dug the tank up or when Jim was handling IT (Page 315; panel 1) I question the true nature of Mr. Slime Tendril!

Edit: Do you mean that human touch was non-threatening but robotic touch was considered hostile?

Maybe Hans just had cold hands!
JasperWB 31st May 2012, 11:59 PM edit delete reply
Yeah but the mud is unclean or something. I think there is a correlation there because it would be so easy to overlook, but once you realize it you get a "damn I'm a moron" moment.

And I don't know what it was about his hands. I mean Jim had gloves on and what dripped on Mary could have been pure mud...

...maybe this slime is a filtration system that the tank used to do its job of bio weapon cleanup and it became imbued with some of the powers of the chemicals or that's how it functioned anyway? I mean, how else did the tank function and why was the main body filled with so much mud they didn't get rid of earlier? And Jim spaced what the shit was because the fungus had him so interested.
cattservant 1st Jun 2012, 12:03 AM edit delete reply
My neurons are spinning! I'm going to go feed the Cats for a while...
cattservant 31st May 2012, 9:50 PM edit delete reply
Perhaps we will learn something about the nature of XVT and the dynamics of slime tendrils now.

A very kinetic page, Thank-view!
Meh.Aloe 1st Jun 2012, 4:03 AM edit delete reply
Ahh, the confusing mystery of the deadly tank of death continues!

In the comments to the last page, view said, amongst other things, "...there is an anti-bioweapon tank weapon. Unfortunately, the bioweapon is wearing it... " We know that these tanks carried XVT because it's the only thing that can kill bio-weapons. We also know XVT is a dangerous chemical, powerful enough to quickly melt people, and poison entire communities, though it is possible to clean up, given enough time. Also, we know that the tank was dead when it was first uncovered, with only indicator lights left.

So, unless the tank has been repaired to full functionality (which I doubt Jim would do, at least without somehow making sure it wouldn't go on a rampage -- biotech may not be his strong suit, but AI and electronics and mechanics should be!), I am continuing to guess that cattservant was right last page when speculating that a bio-weapon has somehow taken over the tank. The tank itself also contains XVT somewhere, so Mary and our fightin' robots have to try and get onto the tank, avoid the deadly bio-weapon that has possessed it, and reach the XVT canisters that it may still have on board.

... Then again, would they just leave canisters of this deadly chemical on the tank? Maybe there's no place to store such things that would really be safer, though... Or maybe this was the part where Jim was stupid. :P

I wonder whether, by releasing XVT to stop the bio-weapon, they'll also end up poisoning the town's environment? Perhaps the comic will end on a bitter-sweet note, with the bio-weapon thwarted and lives saved, but now everyone has to pack up and leave the town for years, until clean-up is complete -- the gang splits up, and Miwa and Jim have to go their separate ways (assuming Miwa survives, if she really is going to come back and try to save the day).

Also, what kind of bio-weapon is capable of taking over a tank and using it to smash things? D: That is an awesome concept. There are micro-organisms out there that can form communities and do pretty neat stuff, like crawling around almost as if they were a proper multi-cellular life-form. A specially genetically engineered bio-weapon could surely do all sorts of crazy stuff, and it'd make sense for its designers to give it the ability to take over the very technology that was developed to kill bio-weapons...
view 1st Jun 2012, 4:05 AM edit delete reply
Bing! You win a sketch, for being right about the tank.
Meh.Aloe 1st Jun 2012, 4:31 AM edit delete reply
If you mean there really is a bio-weapon controlling that tank, I have to fairly say that cattservant figured it out first! D:

On the other hand, I've always wanted to see a sketch of Gretel's mom dancing! :D She takes dancing lessons!
cattservant 1st Jun 2012, 8:06 AM edit delete reply
Maybe Ballet? She certainly has the toes for it!
JasperWB 1st Jun 2012, 5:11 AM edit delete reply
Wait, which part is right?
AlfaFoxtail 1st Jun 2012, 11:02 AM edit delete reply
so wait...the bio weapon is sentient?
Meh.Aloe 1st Jun 2012, 3:19 PM edit delete reply
It could have animal-like instincts of the "HULK SMASH!" variety, activated when it perceives itself to be under attack.
cattservant 1st Jun 2012, 5:10 PM edit delete reply
@Meh.Aloe: As in (Page 315; panel 4)? Sqlich!

Notice how quickly things develop after that!
CyberSkull 1st Jun 2012, 1:13 PM edit delete reply
Bio-hack to send the tank in berserker mode?
cattservant 1st Jun 2012, 5:19 PM edit delete reply
I think the tank is still just 'dead metal' and that Mr. Slime Tendrils is using it as a combination skeleton and weapon. A matter of leverage and force multiplication so to speak.
pancake 1st Jun 2012, 6:51 PM edit delete reply
please don't take this as me rushing you or anything, but OH GOD I WANT TO SEE THE NEXT PAGE UPDATE ALREADY IT'S SO INTENSE
cattservant 1st Jun 2012, 8:20 PM edit delete reply
In appreciation of panel 4:

Mr. Slime Tendrils, Mr. Slime Tendrils
Mr. Slime Tendrils, dance

Thank you view!
Meh.Aloe 2nd Jun 2012, 3:06 AM edit delete reply
Haha, that is awesome! If "Never Mind the Gap" is ever adapted as a puppet play, this will be a very natural scene. :P