Webcomic / Rusty and Co.

Rusty, Mimic, Cube

"Okay, forget the lockpicks... Does anyone have HANDS?"

Rusty and Co. is a comedic fantasy RPG-Mechanics Verse webcomic by Mike R., based on Dungeons & Dragons, about a literally monstrous trio of adventurers. With the charismatic Mimic, absurdly cute rust monster Rusty, and the silent yet deadly Gelatinous Cube, the three set out in search of fame, fortune, and experience levels — and every adventure, they ally themselves with an Action Girl for at least part of the level. Difficulties that would be obstacles to more conventional adventurers of course pose no problem for these three, whereas other more usually simple endeavors create challenge. Hilarity Ensues with a side of Lampshade Hanging.

Can be found on its own website. Has a Character Sheet.

Rusty and Co. provides examples of:

  • 419 Scam: Calamitus falls for one hook, line, and sinker in a Fourth-Wall Mail Slot strip.
  • Action Girl: It seems that each level has at least one, including the Princess, Madeline Goodlaw, Roxanne Casbaugh, Prestige Perkins and Stabs Doogans.
  • Added Alliterative Appeal: Level 5 has a good one (riffing on V for Vendetta).
    Prestige: Prestige Perkins, practiced practitioner of practical prestidigitation, at your service.
  • Almost Dead Guy: Rusty, opening level 7.
  • Alt Text: From level 1:18 on.
  • Ancestral Weapon: The dwarf's quest is to recover one of these.
  • Animesque: More and more along with the Art Evolution.
  • Art Evolution: After the first chapter (or level, as it's called), the artwork becomes more streamlined. This gets lampshaded in a bonus strip, with a Shout-Out to The Order of the Stick.
  • Art Shift: Pulled off due to the Belt of Genre Changing.
  • Aside Comment: Roxy, while looking straight at the audience:
    Roxy: Something tells me Presti's not going to thank me for this rescue.
  • Aside Glance:
    • Prestige, after seeing the capabilities of Stabs.
      Prestige: I was just chased by brain-eating monster mobsters, and that was still the scariest thing I've seen all day.
    • Mimic manages the exploit of doing an obvious one while lacking eyes:
      Madeline: Have you seen any monsters acting weird?
      [beat panel]
      Mimic: Yer gonna have t'be more specific than that.
  • Ass Shove: A Funny Background Event in #4.8. Mimic disguises himself as one of the Pixie Chicks' speakers. Roxy plugs her guitar into him.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: This is what results from Rusty getting hold of the Belt of Genre Changing.
    Rusty: EAT TOKYO?
  • An Axe to Grind:
    • Cleave-Hand. This also doubles as Hook Hand.
    • Handsome D'an the illithid, who's carrying a huge axe with him.
  • Badass Boast: Of the villainous variety:
    Calamitus: Do you think mundane matter could best my formidable necromantic powers? I have transcended the limits of mere flesh and blood...and I will shatter your bodies and dance upon your entrails!
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: The illithid mobsters.
  • Bar Brawl: Madeline ends up starting one in her first appearance.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Princess' first outfit, and the Pixie Chicks'.
  • Baseball Episode: Level 8 is titled "Wait... is he seriously doing a baseball episode?" Sure enough, Robespierre, Mimic, Stabs and her brothers are getting roped into such a game in the arena, to the horror of the Halflings (who were expecting good old Gladiator Games instead). However, it appears to be gnomish baseball... which, at a glance, is baseball mixed with lots of gratuitous violence.
  • Beat Panel: Plenty.
  • Beggar with a Signboard: In the beginning of Level 8, we see a down-on-his-luck Calamitus lying in a dark alley with a signboard reading "Will perform EVIL 4 gold!"
    Alt Text: The court got Calamitus for practicing Necromancy without a license... took everything, even his material components.
  • Be Yourself: Mimic's advice to Dirk. Stabs comments on the irony of a mimic advising it.
  • Big Eater:
    • Rusty's solution to just about everything is "Eat <metal thing relevant to problem>?"
    • Cube can eat a horse wholesale.
  • Bland-Name Product: Who doesn't want a can of Cloaker-Cola while listening to music on their Eye-pad and checking Feysbook using Druid?
  • Blinding Bangs: The Pixie Chicks. Used to great effect to hide the fact that one of them is really Roxanne.
  • Blob Monster:
    • Gelatinous Cube
    • the Gibbering Mouther
  • Blood Sport: gnomish baseball
  • Brain Bleach:
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs:
    Plaidbeard: ...razzafrazzin' heroes...
    ...razzafrazzin' mimics...
    ...razzafrazzin' mimic heroes...
  • Brick Joke:
    • The dwarf from level 1, who gives the first quest, is killed by Gelatinous Cube, gets better, and is killed again by Cube is seen at the very end of level 4, in the aftermath of the Big Bad battle. It's never explained how he got better a second time...
    • Madeline purchased a "magic" hoe from a gnome. On Level 5, that guy tries to sell more cutlery.
    • Madeline finds a hay fork and thinks that it's a Trident of Warning. 10 months later she turns out to be right — it detects piranhas.
  • Captain Colorbeard: Plaidbeard, the dwarven pirate.
  • Characterization Marches On: Mimic started out with a Noo Yawk accent that got dropped after a while.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Or Chekhov's Badger Launcher in that case; introduced along with Presti in the beginning of Level 5. At the end of it, she uses it to kill V'innie.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The barbarian ("Robespierre SMASH!") reappears. So far, twice.
  • Cliffhanger: Level 6.
  • Clothing Damage:
    • Ezra can regenerate wounds, but not her clothes, which get more and more busted as the fight goes on.
      Ezra: That dress was vintage.
    • Similarly, Madeline's armor and gloves are badly damaged by the end of Level 6.
  • Con Man: Or con gnome, to be precise. This is how Madeline got her hoe, which she originally thought was magic.
  • Conspicuous CG: The elder god in Level 6. As is usually the case in webcomics, intentionally used to make it looks more otherworldly.
  • Convenient Questing: Mimic explains to Madeline that you follow the closest lead.
  • Cool Horse: Parodied.
  • Cranium Chase: Ezra is decapitated three times by Madeline, each time putting back her head on her shoulders (though after a Staircase Tumble for the third). Then again by Cube, who counters her regeneration by putting it backwards.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Grinner in Levels 6 and 7. Very little seems to get past him.
  • Curse Cut Short: By a well-placed Written Sound Effect.
    Handsome D'an: I don't care! Shoot them up their <DING>
  • Cute Monster Girl: Y.T. the lamia.
  • Darkest Hour: The end of Level 6. The Grinner has just completely defeated the group, leaving Madeline near death, Rusty desperately running away with her, and Mimic and Cube captured.
  • Death Glare:
    • Madeline gives a magnificent one against Grinner, finally triggering a reaction other than Smug Snake.
    • Cube manages one not long after Madeline, especially impressive since Cube doesn't have eyes or even a face.
  • Death Is Cheap: Averted and explained in one of the third-level critical missives.
  • Delayed Reaction: Roxanne doesn't tick immediately when Rusty announces his intent to eat flowers, but after a beat she realizes how weird it is since rust monsters aren't herbivore. The flowers are made of gold.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Rusty's eating habits assist an elder god out.
  • The Don: Don Polpo
  • Double Entendre: Rusty's "Eat hoe?" on seeing Madeline leads to Mimic concluding that the comic will never pass muster with the Comics Code Authority.
  • The Dragon:
    • Cleave-Hand, for Grinner.
    • V'innie, for Don Polpo.
  • Ear Ache: When Presti and Roxy are reluctant to go to Mimic and Cube's rescue, Madeline proves quite convincing, notably by grabbing Roxanne's long elven ear.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The elder god.
  • Enemy Mine: With Y.T. in the sixth level.
  • Enemy Without: Subverted to hilarious effect when Madeline the Paladin gets zapped by an artifact that draws out her evil side, Anti-Madeline — who turns out to be about two inches tall.
  • Evil Gloating: Calamitus has a nasty tendency to get caught up in this, allowing the good guys to surprise him.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Robespierre has such a moment during the Gnomish baseball match, when he realize there might be a problem with Mimic hitting the ball.
    Robespierre: Even grounder will allow whiny halfling to advance to scoring position. All talky box must is keep eye on... Oh.
  • Eye Poke: Prestige Perkins tries this on the Illithid door-keeper Handsome D'an, who has enough good sense to step back. Too bad she still uses the extended fingers to cast "Melf's Acid Arrow" right in his face.
  • Face Palm:
    • No, Mimic has neither face nor palm. Yes, he can still facepalm nonetheless.
    • The male hipster vampire also does it while scrying on his sister making a fool of herself.
    • And Y.T. after Mimic breaks the bottle holding a fairy.
  • Face Plant: Dealing with Rob the Hammer gets this, followed by his hammer falling on his head.
  • Head Turned Backwards: After demonstrating that having Ezra's head lopped off isn't going to stop her, Cube counters this by letting it fall backwards on her neck, and her regeneration power immediately glues it in position, putting a serious damper on her combat capability. Until her brother turn said head the right way, in a move that would be a Neck Snap if they weren't undead.
    Koenig: Keep your head straight, dear sister.
    Ezra: I'm never drinking from a twist-off bottle again.
  • High-Class Glass: Card Shark the Derro sports one.
  • Hulk Speak: Krog; Robespierre
  • Hurricane of Puns: At the beginning of Level 7:
    Stabs: If we go through the Ed Wood, there's a 60% chance of zombies.
    Detour through the Elijah Wood? 70% chance of orcs.
    The Frankie Valley? 90% chance of grease.
    Don't even ask about the River Phoenix.
  • Hybrid Overkill Avoidance: Offered as advice in the Critical Missives.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: "Level" chapters.
  • Impaled Palm:
    • Stabs to a Derro.
      Card Shark: Ma'am, I believe pinning your opponent through the sleeve is more traditional.
      Stabs: Do you have any idea what kind of day I'm having!?
    • Madeline stabs a girallon through the palm with her pitchfork to perform a throw.
    • Cube stabs Grinner with Maddie's borrowed pitchfork through the palm just as the gnoll is trying to gloat.
    • And just afterward, Stabs throw a knife through Grinner's hand... just as he's holding a lit stick of dynamite. That really ruins his day.
  • Insult Friendly Fire: Mimic accidentally does this to Gelatinous Cube when he sees another cube.
    Rusty: Awkwaaaaard.
  • Kick Them While They Are Down: A troll barges into the hospital to settle scores with a patient.
  • Kirby Dots: Trails of interlocked dots accompany the creation of Anti-Madeline. Also seen around the amplifier when about to tear up reality.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: The wight in the forest claims he used to be one.
  • Knights and Knaves:
    • Done with two talking doors. Mimic's solution? Become a third door.
    • Parodied again later (in level 5), with two even more obnoxious doors. Rusty's solution is deliciously straightforward, and hinges on his ability to eat metal.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: Malevolus is about to have a "You shall not pass" moment, then he looks at the adversaries and does the math.
    Malevolus: ... And if you want to reach the Inner Sanctum, you'll need to go...
    ... through... [looks at Rusty, then Cube, then thinks about what happens when the both of them go through him]
    ... that tunnel there, then hang a right, then the next right, then straight on to the big doors.
  • Lava is Boiling Kool-Aid: Much of level 7 is around lava like this. D&D rules take the blame.
  • Literal Metaphor: At the beginning of a Level 6 strip, Y.T. warns Mimic: "Don't crossss me." At the end of the strip, Mimic does exactly that (using Y.T.'s stretched body to cross a chasm); the lamia ain't happy about it.
    Y.T.: Whu'd I jusst sssay, hah?
  • Luminescent Blush:
    • Happens to Gelatinous Cube of all people.
      Madeline: Wasn't he green a moment ago?
      Mimic: Okay, seriously, ya gotta stop stickin' your hand in strangers.
    • Also to Madeline herself, every time she mentions Derek the Cleric. When she's actually facing him, the blush spread to her whole face.
    • Rusty gets one after he eats Roxanne's underwire.
  • The Mafia: Complete with illithid (mind flayer) members.
  • Matter of Life and Death: Clerics can only use healing power for this during gnomish baseball, because otherwise they'd run out.
  • Metronomic Man Mashing: Well, Gnoll-mashing. Cube of all beings does it to Grinner, with the help of Madeline's pitchfork impaled through the gnoll's hand. Rusty, Roxy and Presti are tremendously enjoying the show.
  • Modesty Shorts: Madeline is sensibly wearing (anachronistic) biker shorts under her leather skirt in her first appearance. (In the second, she's wearing winter clothes, making the matter moot.)
  • Monster Adventurers: The whole starting concept of the webcomic.
  • The Need for Mead: Ye Olde Proverbial Hook is a repeating location.
  • The Nose Knows:
    • When the Princess defends her smoking, Mimic points out that monsters hunt through smell.
    • Stabs can recognize that Prestige is a cop by smell alone.
    • The guards to the Inner Sanctum of the Tentacallis Dungeon are grimlocks, who are blind and hunt through smell.
    • And Madeline can smell Character Alignmentinvoked.
  • Oblivious to Love: Derek the Cleric doesn't seem to realize the meaning of Madeline's Luminescent Blush when she's facing him, mistaking it for a medical condition.
  • Odd-Shaped Panel:
  • Offscreen Crash:
    Mimic: Boris Vallejo ain't gonna paint that.
    Roxanne: Exit Grinner, stage right... er... and stage left.
  • Oh Crap!:
    • When Presti accidentally bursts into Don Polpo's dining room.
    • Presti again, when she sees the Magic Missile built by the Tentacallis.
  • Oh My Gods!: Literally used by Prestige Perkins after Mimic and Cube save her.
  • Only One Name: Averted for Madeline, as Zar's psychic ability in strip 7-16 addresses each character by their last name (if not previously revealed). The paladin's name is Madeline Goodlaw. (Rusty hasn't a last name, so Zar tries to formalize it to "Mr. Russell".)
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: Zar tells Madeline that the pitchfork is this. In reality, its magical powers apparently derive from Madeline's belief in them.