Sam and Fuzzy Q & A: GPS Edition
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"Ever since Hazel found the GPS coordinates of the pit, I've been wondering – How long had the committee kept GPS technology a secret? Five centuries? Six? More? They had to have had it before they erased their memories – they can't have modified their pit codes since then – and now we know that was maybe ten generations before 1699, the real year of Robert Boyle's death. It's quite impressive how long ago they must have mastered both special and general relativity, especially considering that we on the surface wouldn't even have classical mechanics yet. Which makes me wonder... was it the committee that was pulling the strings in the attempts to suppress Galileo for breaking the Aristotelian status quo? BOYLE!!!" -Jason
Ha ha, I like this question!
The short explanation for why the centuries-old pit codes can add up to produce GPS coordinates is, well... because it was funny. There's always a bit of a line to walk with a comic like this when it comes to balancing narrative logic lore vs. goofy impossible gags. I mean, it's especially goofy because Hazel calls them "GPS coordinates" in particular, rather than just degrees of longitude and latitude. Forget Galileo... I don't think the original Committee had GPS satellites!
But if you want to think about it in terms of "serious lore", well... given that the codes were likely created somewhere around the mid to late 1500s, the coordinates they produce probably use some sort of advanced but early historic system of distance measurement and positioning used by the Committee at the time, which Hazel has already learned how to convert. I'll leave it up to you to decide what particular methods they might have used. Ha!
This question is particularly funny to me because it's not the part I was expecting to get called out on! I thought for sure what people would ask about is why people on the original Committee recognized Rexford was a dinosaur, even though the first dinosaur fossils weren't discovered until the 1800s. But maybe that just seems like the sort of general knowledge Undergrounders would have! (Along with knowing that things like vampires and wolfpeople are real.)
"Regarding this strip, is the top panel a reference to the Soul Society city from Bleach? (Funny given how Bleach's many Samurai are the arch nemesis of the Ninja.) Or is it ye olde Japanish city archetype?" -Tom
No, not in particular! I was just trying to draw a version of the modern Ninja Mafia HQ that looked... older.
I can't remember where exactly the idea for the modern design of Mafia HQ came from, though! It's kind of a nonsensical looking building, isn't it? It's not even particularly ninja-esque. Maybe I had been watching too much Venture Bros. at the time and was thinking about the Monarch's coccoon?
"Is Rexford's mistrust of Sam since day one of his tenure on the Committee because Sam reminds him of Raphael? Both are newer members of the Committee, both have somewhat radical opinions on how the world should be run, and both seem to have an almost innocent lack of knowledge about how the world and Underground have survived for as long as they have. Has Rexford been as hard on Sam as he was simply because he feared that Sam would become the next Raphael?" -Dawson
Sam (at least initially) definitely reminds Rexford of people like Raphael. When you think of the number of hotshot new Committee members Rexford must have sat through over the years, all of them coming in with their big ideas to shake up a system he has overseen for hundreds of years... it probably starts to seem like a bit of a cliche.
But as for how much of a parallel there is with Raphael specifically, well... I'll let the rest of the story show you!
That's a wrap for this week, team. See you on Monday with our next comic!