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General, NP & Sketchbook

El Goonish Shive

Sister

Painted Black

Before The Party

Grace's Birthday Party

  • Immortals and failing alarm clocks.
    "Stupid human-made technology!"
    "That's not human-made. You made that last night with your magic."
    "Stupid me-made technology!"
  • When explaining how she and Elliot are different (i.e. why Elliot is more of a stick-in-the-mud), Ellen's summation and Elliot's reaction to it in the last panel here are priceless.
    Ellen: You're like me if I was directed by George Lucas.
    Elliot: YOU TAKE THAT BACK!
  • I'M A MOMMY!
  • This comic from Grace's birthday party.
  • Susan and Justin got Grace a plant for her birthday. Jeremy was pleased.
    Tedd: I think I've figured out what kind of plant it is...
  • During Grace's birthday party, Sarah wonders what a date between the genderflipped Sarah and Elliot would be like;
    Sarah: (...Wow. That was the worst fantasy ever, and there wasn't even a party in it. I have no idea what I'm doing, do I?)

Hidden Genesis

Sister II

Bringing Silly Back

  • Tedd's horrified reaction to his own Character Development.
    Tedd: For the record, I am much more interested in figuring out the science behind all of this than seeing a woman's naked breasts...Oh dear lord, what have I become?
    Elliot: I dunno, mature?
    Tedd: Blasphemy.
  • The entire race between Elliot and Noah in Swedekea. "Giant Bean Bag Chairs!"
  • THE PLASTIC! IT HURTS!
    • And two pages later, Catalina buying the hammer. Her body language is so gleeful you don't need to see her face.
  • The Demonic Duck's biggest distraction yet, though Grace's Puppy-Dog Eyes coupled with Susan's flat "He's fine" sell it.
  • The girls summarizing their adventures to an Immortal—who can't believe his ears—in the Hammerchlorians arc. And then Grace tries to top it off.
    Jerry: <speechless>
    Grace: Have I mentioned I'm part space alien?
    Commentary: Somewhere, at this very moment, Raven has a headache and he knows not why.
  • Susan under the influence of the serenity spell.
    Susan: I have determined that this illusion is fuzzy.
    • On the next page.
    Susan: I require illusory carrots.
  • When Jerry offered Sarah magic.
  • Dan explains the nature of immortals and the memories they preserve on death.
  • Magus is trying to get Sirleck to listen to his plan.
    Sirleck: I only helped you before because that ancient crazy immortal was with you. I have no reason to listen to you now.
    Magus: Oh yes you do.
    Sirleck: Really? And what reason is that?
    Magus: Because you can't hurt me, I never sleep or run out of breath, and I have nothing better to do than follow you around and babble incessantly about anything and everything.
    (Beat)
    Sirleck: I will listen.
    Magus: To my plan, or incessant babbling.
    Sirleck: Your plan, so both.
  • For some reason, the third panel from this strip is just hilarious.
    I... I'm not sure...
    • And, a few comics later...
      The professor's crying again.
      He must be passionate about physics.
      I'm inspired!
  • Named by Democracy leaps into action.
    Justin: The only thing I noticed was that the skirt sort of looked like a cheerleader's.
    Carol: And she's not going for a cheerleader theme.
    Justin: I don't think so. I mean—
    Carol: Hang on...Apparently the internet has latched on to the whole cheerleader thing and started calling her Cheerleadra.
    Justin: What? But we only just--
    Carol: The internet is often fast and horrible.
  • Elliot fails at perversion, which is funny enough (especially the self-inflicted What the Hell, Hero? moment - "I'm someone's daughter, you bastard!"). Ellen's Manic Pixie Dream smile is what sells it though.
    Elliot: I fail at perversion.
    Ellen: Need some tips?
    • And then the very next page has him asking, in reference to his "secret identity forms"...
      Elliot: Where are those in here, anyway? I swear this thing makes up words to pad it's own length. What does "exorbitant breadth" mean and what does it have to do with my chest?
  • "Et tu, Yoda t-shirt?"
  • First and last panels. SLAPPITY SLAPPITY SLAPPITY SLAPPITY
  • The Child Left Behind (AKA Noah)'s reaction to Grace's code name.
    Greg: Are you okay?
    CLB: I'm fine! I tripped!
    Grace: But you were sitting.
    CLB: Yes I was. Sorry, mistress. Ma'am. Shade Tail.
  • Super heroes are bouncy.
  • Heidi's introduction.
    Melissa: (as Heidi rants in the background) Personality shift?
    Justin: Um, yeah.
    Melissa: So which is the real—
    Justin: Not this one.
    • ...and The Rant on said introduction:
      Deciding how exactly to dress "party" Elliot was a bit tricky. With mild-mannered, it was pretty simple, and with goth, I just wanted an outfit that was a bit over-the-top but clearly what one might picture as being goth. With party... what does one wear to parties? What was I gonna do, put a lampshade on her head?
  • The last three panels.
    Girl 3: I can't believe he's gay! Not that there's anything wrong with that. I'm just upset that I can't ask him out.
    Girl 1: Don't you already have a boyfriend?
    Girl 3: Of course I do. He's right here.
    Boyfriend: I am less than happy right now.
  • Elliot discovering his goth female Alter Ego.
  • "The Princess Bride sucked." Just look at the reaction they have and the expression Susan's got at the same time.
  • Faces made after the Pancake Mount Doom.
    • Plus, look at the pictures near Grace's. They're all chubby people.
  • Noah Hilarity in this strip.
  • The cop saying he doesn't believe it when the bystanders tell him about Justin defeating the fire monster only for the bystanders to whip out video camera phones that recorded the fight here.
  • The news reports following the battle with the dragon. Particularly:
    • The police officer's report.
    Officer: We have received a message from someone claiming to be the cloaked figure that the summoner has been stopped. We believe it to be authentic.
    Reporter 1: And why is that?
    Officer: The message started as a blank note dropped by a flying figure. That note then erupted with text in a swirl of fantastic sapphire light.
    Reporter 1: Ooh!
    Reporter 2: Classy.
    • The conversation between the professor and the vlogger.
    Professor: ...I'm not saying it couldn't be aliens. I'm just saying we don't have much information yet and the possibilities are practically infinite.
    Vlogger: Why must you be so closed-minded?
  • "SHE'S OKAY! Why yes, I imagine me yelling into the phone would hurt your ears."
  • Upon Elliot discovering his his superhero form's secret identity: Oh my goodness! I'M MILD MANNERED!

Q&A # 5

9001% Serious

Summer

The Dawn

Pandoras Box

  • Grace's face when she's trolling Luke.
  • Luke's plan to lose quickly so as to be able to talk to Justin and Grace runs into a snag when...
    Rich: You're using fairies? Pfft. Gay.
    [beat]
    [Luke adjusts his glasses]
    Narrator: Many time consuming turns later...
    Luke: [surrounded by badass fairies and a drake] That's game.
  • Larry hitting on Tedd during the match, not knowing he's a guy.
    Larry: That card reminds me of this one time I saved a puppy from a mountain lion. Punched it right in its nose!
    Tedd: The mountain lion or the puppy?
  • OH YEAH! Tensaided's Oh, Crap! face is priceless.
  • In the Squirrel Prophet Part to arc, the "final battle" splash page has something for everyone. Sarah vs. Sam is one of the highlights.
    Sarah: I am jealous of how many pockets you have!
    Sam: [dead serious] I know.
  • "Well good for Spider-Man. I jiggle."
  • In the middle of a revelation about Luke: "OH MY GOD BIGFOOT IS REAL."
  • Sarah gets a little too deep into the roleplaying.
    Sam: (gives a speech about how Sarah's vampires cannot be trusted to redeem themselves) This can only be resolved through combat. There is no other way.
    Sarah: How can you know that?
    Sam: Because we're playing a card game in a tournament.
    Sarah: (blushes) Oh! Uh, right. Heh.
  • This guy has a really annoying playing style.
  • Sarah and Sam's stalemate.
    Sarah: (bored) I summon another vampire. The forest is safer and stuff. Go.
    Sam: Are you sure you don't want to attack?
    Sarah: Why don't you attack?
    Sam: It's your turn.
    Sarah: Nuh-uh, I ended it.
  • After Grace finds Ted's mage mark.
    Ted: So I really have a magic mark? I...I've been given the power to turn myself into a girl?
    Ted: Wow that's redundant.
    Grace: You have, what, three ways of doing that now?
    Ted: Four if you count asking Ellen, and I'm working on more. Still pretty cool, though.
  • After a card tournament that lasts lasts several real-world months, the grand prize goes to a nameless extra.
  • Justin promises to explain what's going on to Luke.
    Luke: And this is just a friendly chat between me an you? Nobody's getting kicked into a river?
    Justin: I swear on my honor as a fan of Captain Picard.
    Luke: I thought you said you liked Kirk.
    Justin: I do, but I'm swearing to peaceful discussion. Kirk would be for sleeping with green women.
  • Luke learns about immortals.
    Luke: Whoa... a-and what are they called?
    Justin: Immortals.
    Luke: ...they're literally just called "immortals"?
    Justin: As far as I know.
    Luke: That's... terrible.
  • Proving that Susan and Diane have more in common than it at first seems...
    Diane: I've made a terrible mistake.
  • Ashley saying some stuff about herself:
    Ashley: Um... what else? Oh! I play ballet and dance soccer! *long pause* Wait! I mean-!
    Elliot: One sec, I'm imagining dance soccer.
  • Ashley was advised to avoid the bookstore while on the date. However, she forgot to look prior to suggesting an alternative. Cue the biggest Luminescent Blush in the comic's run.
  • When the group is trying to figure out why, given that she's apparently free to come and go as she wishes, Andrea hasn't yet returned to her half of the universe.
    Charlotte: She's shown too much mobility for an injury to be responsible...
    Nanase: Maybe there's an enemy she doesn't want to lead there?
    Diane: What if she's being lied to by someone, too?
    Ashley: Maybe she has a bad sense of direction? (looks embarrased) Ok, yeah, that's probably not it...
    Tara: That... sounds exactly like Andrea.
    Humans: What.
  • Diane doesn't believe in Tara's supernatural senses and doesn't believe that she's any sort of potential vampire hunter. When her companion points out Tara's uncanny ability to detect that Ellen and Elliot were twins, Diane gave this response:
    Diane: OH MY GOD! She deduced that the people with nearly identical faces are twins?! She must be a wizard griffon!
  • Elliot finds out what happens to his cell phone when he transforms into Cheerleadra with it in his pocket. He starts vibrating in mid-air, then touches his stomach and starts hearing Ashley's voice in his ears.
    Ashley: How are you answering this? Ellen told me you wouldn't have your phone if you weren't changed back yet.
    Elliot: You're calling me on a phone?
    Ashley: Um, yeah?
    Elliot: This is a phone call?
    Ashley: Um...
    Elliot: I don't have my phone! I just sort of... buzzed all over, and now we're talking!
  • When Nanase shows up in fairy doll form and Andrea gushes about how incredibly magically powerful this is, calling her "Your Highness" for the umpteenth time, Nanase corrects her yet again. The griffins point out how powerful her magic is, pointing out "Do you have ANY idea how many laws of physics you've broken just doing that?" Nanase remarks "We view the laws of physics more as polite suggestions."
  • The griffins bantering about alternate universes.
  • This conversation about the recent fight.
  • Andrea's shock at what Nanase and Elliot say about alternate universes.
  • Tara suddenly remembering that Andrea told her, in no uncertain terms, that immortals are capable of lying. "Whoops." "WHOOPS?!?"
    • And from The Rant directly below: "This feels like a very 'me' moment."
  • Continuing on the "Elliot as a human cell phone" track, they're trying to figure out how to get back to the random spot in the woods they are currently at. Nanase suggests he use his GPS function. Elliot tries to brush it off... but fails.
    Elliot: How the fork would I... [beat] I know our exact GPS coordinates and can see what looks like a floating picture of a satellite view of here. I also know where all the nearby restaurants are.

Sister III - Catspaws

  • Pandora's reason for her Meaningful Name: She acknowledges that her role in the story is closer to Pandora's Box than the mythical Pandora herself, but found that people didn't get the reference when she tried calling herself "Box".
  • The important information about the treasure was that there was no treasure... and that there was a giant magic lion bear.
  • Pandora, hovering ominously above a sleeping and defenseless Grace, says that this will be her LAST dream.....before waking up.
  • Additionally, the dream itself, which involves Greg training Grace, before a Fire Goo Griffin appears out of nowhere, eats Greg's arm to become 5 times stronger, and as Grace finally works up the nerve to stop it...
    Grace: [clearly in shock] Ah! No! I'll stop it! I'll—
    Fire Goo Griffin: [puppy dog eyes] I have a wife and three dozen Fire Goo Griffin babies.
    Grace: [comically hysterical crying face]
  • When Sarah asks Pandora for her name, Pandora says "Box."
  • When Susan learns about her apparent half-sister, she also learns about Jerry knowing about said relation. She decides if Jerry knows, it's probably true. There's a small problem with that. It's the new Jerry's reaction that's the gut-buster, really.
    New!Jerry: (sweating nervously) I reached that conclusion for the same reasons Ellen and Nanase did. I don't know jack.
  • When the Emissary of Magic finds out that Pandora has her "Box" form, he asks why she'd want to look like a child.
    Box!Pandora: ''Stupid no fair rotten stinking cheating magic! Everyone could've had magic, but no! Magic has to be a butt face!
  • Tensaided tries to ask Susan about Elliot's alter-ego, but used some rather poor phrasing.
    Tensaided: I'd best not say anymore. Just wanted you to know I understand. (Gets grabbed by the collar as he walks off) Gwack!
    Susan: I don't!
  • Ellen and Elliot bicker about whose day will be more awkward: hers (due to having to tell Susan about her apparent half-sister) or his(rumors about him being Cheerleada). They finally conclude he wins because he shares some of her awkwardness.
  • Grace has a conversation with Mr. Verres about the ethics of killing aberrations. And then her capabilities, re: killing aberrations.
    Mr. Verres: Whose car did you lift?
    Grace: [avoiding Mr. Verres's gaze] That's not important right now.
  • Diane is not looking nearly as enthused about meeting her sister after finding out that her Brutal Honesty bluntness isn't an act.
    Ellen: She's actually weirdly cheerful on camera. And she keeps smiling! That camera does weird things to her.
  • In this comic, Elliot is surprised that Ellen knows quite a lot about transgender terminology. Her response?
    Ellen: Elliot, I'm a more introspective bisexual female duplicate of you. I've skimmed the Wiki articles of a lot of things.
  • Sarah, after comforting Box and offering to talk again after Box had time to talk to her son, starts getting ready for bed. As soon as her head hits the pillow...
    Sarah: Wait a second! Is she Raven's mother?!
    • That isn't to say that Sarah is completely patient - the previous strip had her (mentally) get exasperated at Box's evasiveness which, as The Rant put it, "Sarah is momentarily possessed for one panel by the readership as a whole."
  • When Pandora tells Tedd what's up with his magic and all Tedd can focus on is
    Tedd: So this doesn't actually work.
  • The commentary for this comic
    Dan: And so it was that Tedd's face froze that way, forever, for he had received far more than his recommended daily dosage of dramatic reveals in just under ten minutes.
  • Tedd is completely thrown by everything to do with his parents knowing Raven, including the fact that he was expected to have magic.
    Pandora: It is guaranteed when both parents are wizards.
    Tedd: Wait, but...my mom's a wizard?
    Pandora: A particularly powerful one. Your mother comes from a long line of monster hunters. So, obviously, does your aunt, who could be equally powerful if she'd tried...
    Tedd: I... But... I thought my mom was a travel agent...
    • and the previous commentary's joke is continued.
    Dan: Tedd managed to successfully move two feet before getting locked in place by more dramatic reveals.
  • The comically over-the-top thief concocts a plan to burn down an orphanage as a distraction while he robs an ATM, use the money to buy a shotgun and ammo, use that to rob the gun shop he buys it from, and then steal puppies, but specifically puppies loved and owned by children to create a personal army of attack dogs.
  • Nanase remains suspicious of Ashley's motives, outright stating that "no one could possibly be that nice all the time. Cut to Ashley panicking that she hasn't returned a book and that means someone could potentially be deprived of reading it.
  • The Dunkel's reaction to Elliot having a girlfriend over. Mr. Dunkel can't keep a straight face at the idea of Elliot doing anything untoward, before suddenly doing a 180, while Mrs. Dunkel casually suggests lesbianism as a form of birth control.
  • Ashley when under the effects of a calming spell. She's still incredibly angry, just in a calm way.
  • The sheer Mood Whiplash when Jerry interrupts Diane and Susan's sad discussion of relationships.
    Jerry: Good for you may you find happiness later but right now YOU TWO NEED TO GET THE #@%! OUT OF THIS MALL
  • Raven slowly freaking out as he tries to figure out when exactly he fathered Diane and fathered Susan's family line centuries ago.
    Raven: There's not a lot of moments when it could have happened without me knowing... my goodness I was in my actual twenties...
    Susan: We can sort out how many details about this I should hear later.
  • This exchange between Arthur and the will of magic.
    Arthur: One in... one in seven million people are seers?
    The Will: Correct.
    Arthur: There are over seven billion people on Earth!
    The Will: It has gotten crowded, yes.
  • The will of magic continues to completely miss the point.
    The Will: Human spells would become random, the agitated energies forming massive storms of chaos magic.
    Van: That sounds bad.
    The Will: Yes. People would stop using magic.
  • A Talking Weapon wand reawakened by magic's change comes to Ashley to defend her against some kind of automaton also reawakened by the change... only to get distracted by how weak of a wizard she is. It even drops its Old English accent in its surprise.
    • The next page has, after more conversation about how even for an artifact designed to help train wizards, Ashley's power is rather low, and the wand revealing that its name is Kevin and calling her "Mittens", Ashley panicking and throwing it at the Golem to distract it from Ellen. The Golem has a Flat "What" reaction, and Kevin gets ticked and asks her if she always throws her teachers.
  • Ellen's hair has turned green somehow...of course we have to be told this because the comic's in grayscale.
  • As Magus fights the Golem (which Elliot briefly fanboys over in the "I've got to learn to do that sort of thing" way), Ashley asks for an update. Elliot informs her that Magus sort of saved them. Ellen grumpily points out they wouldn't need saving if he hadn't gotten them involved. Elliot replies "Hence the 'sort of'."
  • Apparently Agent Wolf’s door opened over the parking lot crater.
  • Ellen is told that she isn’t in trouble, since they know that Magus and Sirlek were responsible. She still wants a phone call... so that Nanase doesn’t destroy half the state looking for her. Arthur agrees.
  • Arthur was the one who created Kevin... and the wand calls him "Daddy!" when they meet. Ellen seems to find it hilarious, and Arthur seems embarrassed by it all.
  • Ellen finding that her spellbook has shrunk. She and Elliot very quickly agree to blame Tedd.
  • Ellen's use of a Paper-Thin Disguise when meeting with Charlotte.

The Legend of Diane

  • Lucy's reaction to Diane's wardrobe shift.
  • Apparently, whenever someone tries to claim something mean about Rhoda there's a bunch of people ready to defend her, Lucy saying that it's like they think that she's a defenseless puppy. When Rhoda wonders if it's because of her collar, Lucy pats her on the head and says that she's almost literally a puppy.
  • Rhoda basically bullying Diane and Lucy into going on a double date with her and Catalina.
    Rhoda: We're having dinner and you're meeting my girlfriend!
    Diane & Lucy: Yes Ma'am.
    Rhoda: Good! I'm very happy for you.

The Secret of Sam

  • While the context (Sarah and Tedd being reminded of Pandora at the card tournament) is sad, the reactions of their opponents, who are flabbergasted and wondering what the heck they did and/or said to cause them to tear up like that, is hilarious.
  • Grace using her antenna to sense where all the dice that fell on the floor went, especially how she shoots down Justin when he thinks that she's going to use her Mind over Matter powers to pick them up.
  • Grace learning that Sam found out about how she reacted to first learning about WWII, and is mortified.

Title Pending

  • When a construction worker tries to impress a passing woman with his pecs, he refers to his arms as "gams", prompting his fellow to point out that "gams" means legs.
  • Elliot gets some advice from Justin.
    Elliot's Thoughts: Should I tell Ashley what actually inspired the party?
    (A tiny ethereal projection of Justin in Jedi robes appears over Elliot's shoulder)
    Tiny Astral Justin: Three camera sitcoms can feel like short plays, thus making the sounds of the studio audience beneficial to the experience.
    Elliot: What?
    Tiny Astral Justin: Whoops, sorry. Wrong sitcom fact.
  • Ashley's fantasy about turning corrupt politicians into chubby catgirls. "I can has bribe money?"
  • Liz's reaction to Elliot's faith in law enforcement.
    Liz: I'd say you can't possibly be this naïve, but I've seen you lying.
  • While the precipitating event isn't funny, Elliot's reaction to stories about Dirty Cops is.
    Nurse: Normally, I'd say "Too angry to function" is not a valid reason to spend a class in the nurse's office, but I've decided to make an exception.
    Elliot: GRR-THANKS.
  • Ellen's calm and composed reaction to having the implications of being "dragon sisters" with her brother/mother/father's girlfriend pointed out here.
  • When Ashley is surprised by Jeremy's appearance, Ellen asks if she's never seen a cat before, being so used to him that she takes a second to remember that cats don't normally have spines.
  • When Nanase's new haircut keeps Ashley from immediately recognizing her, Nanase calls herself "sexy", which Justin lampshades.
  • When Ashley comes over, Mr Verres is firm that no one can tell her anything about aliens, and specifically tells them to keep Grace's abilities and her origins vague. Grace happily reveals all within minutes of meeting her.
    Sarah: [shell-shocked] So I guess they're friends now.
  • While at a video store with Susan, Diane spots her sister and immediately puts on a disguise (which she had in her purse) to hide from her. Susan is flabbergasted.
  • And then when Diane realizes Susan's friends are having a party, which Susan is skipping because she doesn't want to talk about all the stuff that happened at the mall.
    Diane: Your friends are having a party, and you're out renting a movie with your aunt!?
    Susan: We agreed to think of each other as sisters.

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