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<   No. 21   2003-02-10   >

Comic #21

1 Paris: This must be the right door. Open it, Spanners.
2 [sound]: Click. Bzzzzzzt. {doors slide open}
3 Emperor: Young fools! Only now, at the end, do you understand!
4 Iki Piki: {who looks like Luke Skywalker} Close it! Close it! Close it!

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2011-11-23 Rerun commentary: The LEGO Darth Vader is really cool, so I wanted to use it in some comics. This strip was inspired by the fact that Iki Piki's LEGO miniature is actually a LEGO representation of Luke Skywalker in his X-wing pilot outfit. I think some people missed that point and just thought this was a generic comment on the undesirability of opening a random door and running into the Emperor and Darth Vader. That would be pretty bad, but I suspect it's probably worse if you look like Luke Skywalker.

When I started making comics, I chose the size of 730×260 pixels for each strip. The width of 730 pixels was set by the fact that I wanted the comic to display without scrolling horizontally. Back in 2002, over 50% of Internet users were using monitors with 800×600 resolution. Subtract a chunk for window borders, scroll bars, and so on, and I calculated that the comic had to be no wider than about 730 pixels to ensure that it fit.

Nowadays, on most people's monitors (including mine), these old comics look tiny. The size eventually got upgraded in 2005 after many, many readers started complaining that on their fancy new 1024×768 monitors the comics looked too small. (And of course when I did make the comic bigger, everyone still using 800×600 monitors complained.)

I never considered a format in which the panels were arranged in a 2×2 block, like many more modern webcomics. I was still thinking it had to be a comic "strip", with panels arranged in a horizontal row.

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Last Modified: Thursday, 19 January 2012; 00:33:50 PST.
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