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    May 2012

    Default Re: The Annotated Order of the Stick - A Companion Guide

    The Annotated Order of the Stick
    Strips 501 to 600
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    Spoiler: Strips 501-600

    Strip 501: No Cure for the Wedding Bell Blues
    • In page 1, panel 2; we see that when the two Azurites are kissing, they make blue hearts instead of red.
    • In page 1, panel 6; we see the Azurites have blue wine.
    • In page 2, panel 3 shows us that Elan got his eye patch during the journey to visit the 4 southern kingdoms.
    • In page 2, panels 1 through 4; Hinjo appears increasingly annoyed as he visits each of the 4 kings and is refused.


    Strip 502: And I-I-I-I Will Always Love You - No annotations yet

    Strip 503: Surreptitious Admirer - No annotations yet

    Strip 504: That's a Surprisingly Common Reaction - No annotations yet

    Strip 505: ...Or We Will All Stick Separately - No annotations yet

    Strip 506: Flanking Crush - No annotations yet

    Strip 507: Fantasy Troll-Playing Game
    • Panel 12 is an exact copy of Panel 11 in Strip 505, where the Scrags first boarded the ship.


    Strip 508: Sure Beats Flatware - No annotations yet

    Strip 509: It Has Flowers, Hearts, and a DC 30 Lock - No annotations yet

    Strip 510: Killer View
    • In Page 1, Panel 8; the image is a parody of the Intel Inside campaign by the company "Intel".
    • In page 2, panel 1; we see Death to Humans written on the outer wall in red (possibly blood). There are also Azurite soldier heads impaled on spikes along the top of the wall.

    Strip 511: Guerillas in Their Midst
    • In page 2, panel 4; the dialogue references Harrison Ford, who played the whip carrying character, Indiana Jones.


    Strip 512: They've Had Time to Train, Too - No annotations yet

    Strip 513: Security Deposit
    • In panel 2, the Security Advisory System is a spoof of USA's Homeland Security Advisory System for terrorism.

    Strip 514: Elan Would Be So Proud
    • A box to Haley’s right says Gouda – Product of Cliffport, which has been shown to be a staple food of the Hobgoblins.

    Strip 515: A Momentary Experience
    • In the final six panels, the touch of the Wight drains experience, negating Belkar's level gain.

    Strip 516: Turning Azurite, I Think I'm Turning Azurite, I Really Think So
    • In panel 1, the thing that Belkar spots is Mr. Scruffy, as we find out by the cat’s appearance from Belkar’s bag in Strip 520.
    • In panel 11, when Tsukiko casts Dominate Person on Thanh, his eyes change color to match Tsukiko's.

    Strip 517: Probably Best to Choose at Random
    • The Wight is wearing the shoes he asked for in the last panel of 516. In 524, when Thanh overcomes the Domination spell, he comments on his missing shoes. It wears them in many later strips until Strip 830, where it is presumably eaten or burned to death in the fireplace.

    Strip 518: At Least It Wasn't the Fourth Wall Again
    • In the last panel, Haley is blasted so hard from the Electric Orb spell that she gets blasted through the panel border. If you scroll the page over, you can still actually see her outside of the comic border.

    Strip 519: Nightmare on Blue Street
    • The title is a spoof of the film A Nightmare on Elm Street. Blue Street is appropriate for Azure City, since it's color theme is blue.
    • In Panel 12, Haley's dialogue references Wes Craven, who is a film director known for slasher films where the trope Haley mentions is common. He is the director of the film parodied in the Title of the Strip.


    Strip 520: The Power of Immediate Gratification - No annotations yet

    Strip 521: Remorse - No annotations yet

    Strip 522: We're Doomed If She Finds the Map Key - No annotations yet

    Strip 523: Orders That Won't Stick - No annotations yet

    Strip 524: Pretender to the Throne - No annotations yet

    Strip 525: Look More Closelier - No annotations yet

    Strip 526: He's Just Pine-ing for the Fjords - No annotations yet

    Strip 527: Pep Talk - No annotations yet

    Strip 528: The Ghost Screamer
    • In panel 1, we see that when Roy shouts in spirit form, his aura gets pointy.
    • In panel 5, Roy’s line changes depending on the medium you read it in.
    • In the online version of the comic is I wish I could look back through this comic’s archive, and in the printed book he says, I wish I could look back through the previous books.


    Strip 529: The Summons - No annotations yet

    Strip 530: Regarding the Speed With Which One Removes Band-Aids - No annotations yet

    Strip 531: Wake Up Call to Action
    • In page 1, last panel, the dwarf that is depicted is actually a Duergar.
    • We also see in this panel Isamu buying the sap Haley stole off of him when he died, in 521.

    Strip 532: The Exposition Fairy
    • In page 1, panel 7; while Xykon is studying Dorukan’s headband, he is holding the gem that Dorukan and Lirian are trapped in the other hand.
    • In page 2, panel 2; we see the other two of the three sigil guardians from Dorukan’s Dungeon that were in Strips 51 and 52. The guardian of the fire sigil orders hot peppers.
    • In page 2, last panel; Lirian is depicted as visiting Dorukon.


    Strip 533: Open to Multiple Interpretations - No annotations yet

    Strip 534: Medium Creatures - No annotations yet

    Strip 535: The Cat Stays in the Picture
    • In panel 2, we see the King of Nowhere actually does look similar to Roy, who was mistaken as him in Strip 226.
    • In the same panel, we see another appearance of the assassins who tried to assassinate Roy when they thought he was the King.


    Strip 536: A Brief Tribute - No annotations yet

    Strip 537: What Do You Think Comes in a Disguise Kit, Anyway?
    • In panel 8, we see the cart wheel appears stopped, while in the earlier panels it appears to be in motion.


    Strip 538: Fiend or Foe? - No annotations yet

    Strip 539: Well There is That "Saint" Prestige Class - No annotations yet

    Strip 540: Melts in Your Mouth, Not on Your Alignment - No annotations yet

    Strip 541: He's a Gamblin'...Thing
    • In panel 4, when Monster in the Darkness bets monopoly money, the roach that says take the bet has the monopoly man hat and mustache, and is standing on a monopoly house, all references to the board game, Monopoly.
    • In Panel 6, the Roaches' dialogue about the Acid-breathing Shark is a direct reference to the Acid Born Shark that Rich Burlew created for the sourcebook, "Dungeonscape. Rich Burluw is essentially poking fun at himself.

    Strip 542: In Azure City, Shark Jumps You!
    • In page 2, panel 7; we see that the Acid Breathing Shark is missing teeth where O-Chul punched it in the previous page. We see them floating away in page 2, panel 1.

    Strip 543: Shhh! Principal's Coming!
    • Panel 1 implies that the MitD has some instinctual understanding of his powers, as he later does what he is referencing in 661.
    • Panel 3 is a reference to the movie Office Space, particularly this scene. The Demon Roach elaborates the memo.


    Strip 544: A Lot at Stake - No annotations yet

    Strip 545: Someone Should be Wearing Safety Goggles - No annotations yet

    Strip 546: O-Chul's Razor
    • The title refers to Occam's razor: "The simplest explanation is the most likely", as Redcloak mentions in Panel 9.


    Strip 547: Endurance Feat - No annotations yet

    Strip 548: His Most Despicable Act Yet
    • In Panel 9, Red Cloak mentions that he "has bridge to sell to Terabithia". This references the children's book, "A Bridge to Terabithia" in which the main characters (who are children) create a fictional place, Terabithia. The joke here is that since Terabithia isn't real, you'd be gullible to purchase a bridge to it.

    Strip 549: Grueling Ordeal
    • In Panel 12, O-Chul's dialogue is likely a reference to the earlier events of Miko, and her fall from the Sapphire guard.

    Strip 550: +1 BFF
    • In panel 9, O-Chul mentions the game Go which we later see them play in Strip 651.


    Strip 551: Slow and Steady, My Ass! - No annotations yet

    Strip 552: And Yet the Turtle Got Away on His Own - No annotations yet

    Strip 553: Well There is That "Saint" Prestige Class - No annotations yet

    Strip 554: You're No Help at All
    • In panel 10, Elan’s line about not leaving one of our own behind is in reference to Banjo, his hand puppet.

    Strip 555: Half-Dragons Are Even Worse
    • In panel 4, we find out that the Orcs worship Banjo because his clothes match the makeup of the island – 2 caves on a gray mountain match Banjo’s hat, 3 reefs on a blue sea match Banjo’s robes.
    • In panel 11, we see that Orc tongues are blue.


    Strip 556: Nuthin' But Net - No annotations yet

    Strip 557: The Puppet Mistress - No annotations yet

    Strip 558: Sort of Like a Reverse Psion - No annotations yet

    Strip 559: An Introduction to Comparative Theology - No annotations yet

    Strip 560: Meanwhile, His Teammate Was in Rhodes
    • In panel 1, they enter a hatch door which is a reference to the television show – LOST, in which the characters are on an island and find hatches. The logo further’s the reference. There is a smiley face in the logo on the panel.
    • In panel 4, the sign on the wall reads - Greg Initiative, which is a reference to the sit-com Dharma and Greg, since in LOST it's the Dharma Initative. The station is referred to as The Smiley Face, furthering the LOST reference from the 1st panel.
    • In Panel 5, Therkla's dialogue and setting she is in reference Bruce Wayne in Wayne Manor in the Batman Series, and how he was inspired to become a vigilante (in his case a bat, not a ninja).
    • In Panel 11, Cyclops on an island with the men dressed like greeks is a reference to Homer's - The Odyssey. You can see a greek-esque ship in faintly in the background.
    • The title of this strip is a reference to Cyclops’ Teammate – Colossus, and the Colossus of Rhodes.


    Strip 561: Pop Idolatry - No annotations yet

    Strip 562: Heroic Fantasy
    • In panels 1 and 2, Lord Kubota is reading the 4th Edition core rulebooks. The box they are in has the Amazon symbol on it. These both reflect the day that this Strip came out, which was the same day those that pre-ordered the 4th Edition rulebooks on Amazon got them. Apparently, Kubota was one of them.


    Strip 563: Air Mail - No annotations yet

    Strip 564: It's What's For Dinner
    • In the last panel, we see the rest of the Magic Mouth’s interrupted speech from Strip 324.


    Strip 565: The Test of the Memory - No annotations yet

    Strip 566: One for the FAQ - No annotations yet

    Strip 567: The Simplest Explanation - No annotations yet

    Strip 568: A Sign That You Have a Problem - No annotations yet

    Strip 569: Justice Can Be a Messy Business - No annotations yet

    Strip 570: Clean Slate
    • In panel 10 we see Mr. Scruffy dodging Belkar’s puke.

    Strip 571: Return Engagement
    • In panel 2, we see that the Teleport spell splits the word Tele-port, between the locations before and after the spell. This is evidenced again in panel 8.
    • In panel 4, we see the Lizardfolk caster has a diamond in his hand as the component for the spell.

    Strip 572: The Resistance of Memory
    • In panel 7, the Oracle mentions an important client is flying in. We later find out this client is the Adult Black Dragon that attacks Vaarsuvius in Strip 628.


    Strip 573: Slumber Party - No annotations yet

    Strip 574: A Seller's Market - No annotations yet

    Strip 575: I Think They're in One of the Rulebooks, Right?
    • In panel 9, we see the skull of a Riding Bug, which we later encounter a living version of in Strip 683.
    • In panel 10, Heironymous Grubbwiggler names his assistant as Giro, which is an anagram of Igor. Igor has been the name of the hunchbacked butler/assistant in several horror films.

    Strip 576: Construction Workers

    Strip 577: You Can Take the Rogue Out of the City...
    • In panel 4, the sap Haley uses is the one she looted from Isamu’s corpse in Strip 521. He, in turn, bought the sap from the Duergar in 531.

    Strip 578: A Slick Getaway
    • In page 2, panel 8; the far right Golem with the baseball head is a reference to the New York Mets baseball team mascot – Mr. Met. Since his head is a baseball, he is similar to the other Golems because he has stitches as well.


    Strip 579: What They Need is a Writ of Habeas Corpus - No annotations yet

    Strip 580: Hey, I Need to Sell Them Somehow
    • In the last panel, we see that Crystal’s tongue is pierced.

    Strip 581: A Sight for Sore Eyes
    • In page 1, panel 3; we see that one of Crystal’s opponents in the poker game has an ace tucked in her boot. The other of Crystal’s opponents is Jenny the Bard/Rogue, who is named in Strip Strip 611


    Strip 582: Moonlight Rendezvous - No annotations yet

    Strip 583: Love's Sweet Sting
    • In panel 4, Qarr mentions he is missing the Olympics, which is accurate, because the strip was posted in August of 2008, when the 2008 Summer Olympics were being played.

    Strip 584: Improbable Causes
    • In page 1, panel 1; we see that in Vaarsuvius’ Veil spell, each size category is depicted as a different type of plant. Dwarves are bushes, and humans and elves are trees. Vaarsuvius’s tree is twisty and sickly, which matches his current physical state.

    Strip 585: Immaterial Components
    • In panel 1, Qarr is visible, if just barely.

    Strip 586: No Encounter is an Island Unto Itself
    • In panel 2, Therkla hits one guard in the stomach, which makes the sound effect – *gasp!*, and one guard in the crotch, which makes the sound effect – *nuts!*

    Strip 587: What to Expect When You're Expecting Assassins
    • In panel 3, Daigo says that he hopes he doesn’t miss all the kicking and immediately in the next panel is interrupted by a kick from a ninja.


    Strip 588: His Name Probably Helps, Too - No annotations yet

    Strip 589: Entrance Qualifications - No annotations yet

    Strip 590: Role Reversal
    • In the last panel, Kazumi has on shackles, likely because she put up such a fight being captured.

    Strip 591: Antipathy for the Devil
    • In panel 1, when an enlarged Durkon (from his Thor’s Might spell) drops his hammer, it begins to shrink back to normal size immediately.


    Strip 592: Stuck in the Middle - No annotations yet

    Strip 593: Another Choice
    • In page 1, panel 9; in the background you can see the devil that was turned to stone poking out of the trees on the island.
    • On page 2, last panel; you can see Lord Kubota beginning to row away in a row boat in the bottom right corner of the panel. It is the same row boat the Elan and Therkla use to get there in Strip 586.

    Strip 594: Rock the Boat
    • In panel 1, we see that Lord Kubota doesn’t effectively know how to row a boat. He should be facing the other direction.


    Strip 595: Trial of the Century - No annotations yet

    Strip 596: Convenience Story - No annotations yet

    Strip 597: Threat Assessment - No annotations yet

    Strip 598: To Say a Few Words - No annotations yet

    Strip 599: Separate Ways - No annotations yet

    Strip 600: Headed Down - No annotations yet

    Spoiler: Original Post
    Quote Originally Posted by veti View Post
    What I'd appreciate more is not so much "pointing out of things you may not have noticed within the strips themselves", and much more "pointing out connections to sources/media outside the comic", e.g. GI Joe, Harry Potter, LotR, Star Wars etc.

    For instance, Fruit Pie the Sorceror - to this day, I really don't know what that refers to. Ditto the owlbear and 'How many licks does it take...?' It'd be nice to have an Annotation list that explained those things.

    But the note for Strip 21, for instance - that's just something within the comic yourself. If you noticed it, you smile - if not, you don't, but I don't think you gain anything from having the joke explained. If anything, I'd feel either (a) mildly disappointed with myself, or (b) mildly irritated at having to read through it, depending on whether or not I'd noticed it myself.
    Well, anything you would like pointed out that you don't understand, post the update number and panel, and I'll see if I can explain it, or perhaps someone else can, and then we'll add it. This is an ongoing list, after all! As for explanation of jokes...perhaps we should separate things with in comic jokes to references, as in, two different categories, so people can pick and choose which they go through? I just felt one list was a bit more tidy, and easier to handle/read. As in, I don't see it as likely that people would go through the comic three times, one in each category, or something. But I would love suggestions if you have any!
    Last edited by TheWombatOfDoom; 2017-10-10 at 11:30 AM.
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