LNH/ACRA: Master Blaster: Insufficient Postage

Tom Russell milos_parker at yahoo.com
Fri Apr 14 23:01:58 PDT 2006

Warning: VERY, VERY STRONG ACRA.  Reader discretion

   "Hey Rob!  I see you're picking wings off
butterflies.  Care to tell me why?"
   "Just passing the time, Deja Dude.  Hey!  I just
found out that there's eleven or twelve million
illegal Mexican immigrants in America!  Apparently
it's a highly-disputed and contentious issue."
   "You never noticed this before, Master Blaster?"
   "Guess I was too busy laughing at the elderly and
   "Well, they do all the jobs that American citizens
don't want to do.  Like janitorial work, factory work,
   "That's heart-breaking!  I mean, they have enough
trouble changing their colostomy bags."
   "Uh, I meant the immigrants.  Not the elderly and
   "Well, when you act this stupid and needlessly
cruel, it can only mean one thing: you got yourself
another one of those Tom Russell one-shot specials!"
   "I do?  What's it called?"

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   "Insufficient postage?" queries the caesar of cool.
 "What kind of pussified title is that?"
   "I assume that at some point in the story,
someone's going to say that you have insufficient
postage with which to mail something."
   "What?  That's lame, man.  Frickin' lame."
   "Actually," says Deja Dude, cracking his fist on
behalf of his adopted homeland, "I've been meaning to
talk to you about that..."


   Master Blaster enters and greets his wife, Sister
State-the-Obvious.  "Hey, wReanna!  How's the taxes
   "There's something wrong with our W-2s."
   "Yeah?  Let me see it."  wReanna hands the
paperwork over.  Master Blaster scans over the wage
statements for a moment, then shrugs and hands them
back.  "Aw, you know me, hon.  I can't make heads or
tails of all this numerical shit.  That's why I have
you do the taxes."
   "Here," says Sister State-the-Obvious, handing the
W-2s back and pointing to one of the lines.  "Federal
tax withheld last year.  Two dollars from me, two from
   "Four dollars?  That's all?"
   "Yes, Rob.  Just four dollars."
   "And you were always saying the Luthor tax cuts
only benefited people in a higher tax bracket.  We
just got to pay four dollars?  Hell, now I'm sorry I
ran against the guy.*  He's doing a great job."
   [*-- in the now-classic MASTER BLASTER: FRICKIN'
   "No, Rob," says his wife.  It's at times like these
that she remembers why they're such a good match: she
explains the obvious, and he needs it explained. 
"Four dollars is how much we've paid already.  This,"
she produces the 1040 and points to line seventy-five,
"is how much we owe."


   Master Blaster storms into the Ultimate Ninja's
office, pushing his way through a line of disgruntled
legionnaires (all clutching their W-2s).  "Make way,"
he says.  "Main character, comin' through!"
   WikiBoy is seated in the Ninja's office, his tax
papers in tow.
   "You got screwed over, too?" says Master Blaster.
   "Fifty cents withheld," says WikiBoy.  "I know I
only joined a few months before the end of last year,
but this is ridiculous."
   "It seems that all the legionnaires have had a
similar problem," says the Ninja.  "And I want an
   "And we're going to get one," says Master Blaster,
producing an impractically large and bulky gun.  "I'll
lead the team, U. N.!  Because this time..." He
produces an even larger gun and struggles to hold it
in his other hand.  "... it's personal!"
   WikiBoy and the Ninja stare at Master Blaster
   "... what?"


   "... and, as our final order of business," Idiotic
Decision Boy was saying, "because of our budget cuts,
we can no longer afford to work through a payroll
company.  And so, we are taking charge of our own
payroll, using a payroll accounting software system. 
It's extremely easy, guys.  Now, any volunteers?"
   Master Blaster raises his hand.
   "Great," says Idiotic Decision Boy.  "You've got
the job, Master Blaster."


   "I knew I shouldn't have put Idiotic Decision Boy
in charge of that meeting," says Ultimate Ninja.
   "Name's a dead giveaway," points out WikiBoy
meekly.  The Ninja glares at him.  "Well, it is."
   "I would eviscerate him myself," says the Ninja,
"if he hadn't already decided to give himself Asiatic
bird flu.  So I guess that leaves you responsible." 
He unsheathes his ginsu blade and points it at Master
   "But I never volunteer for anything!" says Master
Blaster.  "Why would I have started then?"
   "Idiotic Decision Boy had an aura of idiocy, which
must have caused you to volunteer," explains the
Ninja.  "That's the same reason why we lost Pants
Rabbit Lad and Polydactyly Lad."
   "Bird flu?"
   "No, they didn't.  That was the problem.  Took
Domestic Lad hours to clean up the pavement.  Public
relations nightmare."
   Master Blaster takes a look at the long line of
angry legionnaires, and then turns back to the Ninja
and WikiBoy.  "WikiBoy did it!  He's the one who
   "First off, I didn't join until last fall so I
couldn't have been there after all."
   "Well," says Master Blaster, "what if I edit you so
that you've been here all this time?"


   "You've got the job, Master Blaster.  Now, as to
the question of our roster.  List Lad would like an
assistant.  Any volunteers?"
   WikiBoy raises his hand.


   WikiBoy admires the medal he received for helping
getting the roster updated and complete before he
turns his attention back to Master Blaster. 
"Secondly, my powers don't work that way.  You can't
edit me in a way that retcons other people and their
   "Well," says Master Blaster, "what if I edit your
powers so that you can be edited in a way that gets me
off the hook?"


   "Thanks, WikiBoy!  I'll show you how the payroll
software works after the meeting.  Now, List Lad needs
some help with the roster, and..."
   Master Blaster raises his hand.


   "Hey!" says Master Blaster.  "Where'd WikiBoy go?"
   The Ninja looks at him like he's insane.  "He
hasn't been in my office since this morning when an
angry mob of legionnaires put him in the infirmary for
screwing up the fed withholding on their paychecks."
   Master Blaster glances out the door to find that
the line had disappeared.  "They... uh, they locked
him in the infirmary...?"
   "No, they beat the shit out of him.  He's on a
   "Jesus."  The mob had looked angry before, but not
angry enough to put him in a hospital bed.  There must
be something about WikiBoy that makes people more
likely to abuse him.  "Man.  Sucks to be WikiBoy."  At
least Master Blaster was off the hook.
   "Well," says the Ninja, "I'm not happy with you,
either.  Care to explain this?"  He hands Master
Blaster a piece of paper:

Member: Master Blaster
Real name: Robert Ramirez
Created by: Martin Phipps
Powers: "Mack Daddy Vibes", superhuman strength and
agility, an expert marksman able to produce any weapon
he may need.
Personality: Who is Master Blaster?  He's the man with
the plan, and he has a little something for everybody.
 Guys, you need someone to watch your back in the heat
of battle?  There's no better choice.  And ladies? 
You need a sensitive male to listen to what you have
to say, give you a shoulder to cry on, explore your
feelings together and make passionate, sweet love by
firelight on an imitation bear rug as the light of the
full moon pours in through the frost-paned window of
your ancestral cottage?  Then look elsewhere.  But--
if you're looking for a man to objectify you beyond
your wildest dreams-- then you better call the
Master... Blaster.
Status: Member in good standing.

   "Well, that explains why I didn't get a medal."


   "This is serious, Rob," says his wife.  "We can't
afford this.  Especially after your gambling losses
depleted our savings." [*-- in the more-now,
guess," she continues, unperturbed by the footnote,
"we'll have to make some kind of payment arrangement."
   "No way," says Master Blaster.  "The fees, the
interest!  They're getting enough of our money as it
is.  I'm not going to give them an inch."
   "But we don't have enough money to pay them."
   "Then I have to get the money."


   "Master Blaster!" says Doctor Stomper.  "What a
surprise!  What's up?"
   "I need to borrow the time-cycle."
   "The time-cycle?" says Stomper.
   "Yes, the time-cycle."
   "The same time-cycle that will be featured
prominently in the upcoming series, PIGS IN TIME,
written by Pantless Tom Russell and Mighty Morphin'
Martin Phipps?"
   "The very same," says Master Blaster.
   "It's too dangerous," says Stomper.  "Don't you
remember what happened in the pages of PIGS IN TIME?"
   "Sarcastic Lad and I went on incredible adventures
through time, meeting people, making history, bedding
chicks left and right, all in the pages of PIGS IN
TIME-- a sure-to-be classic series collecting some of
the most far-out and cheerfully un-PC adventures in
the history of the Legion!"
   "You were lost, drifting from time to time and
place to place, for five years of your lifetime! 
Five, exciting, sexy years-- chronicled with robust
detail in the first-ever Phipps-Russell collaboration,
PIGS IN TIME!  Who knows what might happen if you take
the time-cycle again?"
   "As orgasmically wet as that title makes me, I
cannot, in good conscience, allow you to take the
time-cycle again!"
   Master Blaster hits him on the head with a wrench,
steps over his unconscious body, and hops onto the
time-cycle.  "Full tank.  Just like I left it.  Now to
go back into the past, make a lot of money, and bring
it back to the present so I can pay my taxes."
   He turns the key, but the cycle does not start. 
"Of course!  I nearly forgot!"  He looks to the empty
sidecar.  "The motorcycle requires two people in order
for it to work.  And though Sarcastic Lad and I had
many memorable adventures*, I think this time I better
find someone else."
   [*-- in the upcoming pages of PIGS IN TIME!]
   "Hmm," said Master Blaster.  "Now who would be an
amusing foil to my cruel antics and sexist


   "WikiBoy!  Psst!  WikiBoy!  Wake up!"
   WikiBoy stirs, his eyes glazed over with morphine. 
He breathes shallowly through his respirator as he
moves his bloodied, battered, bruised butter batter
battle butler hand towards the caesar of cool.
   "M... Master Blaster...?"
   "Hey, buddy!" smiles Master Blaster.  "Come on! 
You're coming with me."
   "Where... going...?"
   "We're gonna go on an adventure through time."
   "... like... in your amusing buddy comedy series,
PIGS... IN... T... TIME...?"
   "Exactly.  Come on, WikiBoy!  Let's get you out of
this bed!"
   "... can't... on a... respirator..."
   "You can bring it with you!  Now come on!"
   The legionnaire in the bed next to WikiBoy clears
his throat.  Master Blaster turns towards the sound,
and the adjacent legionnaire speaks.

   " You could edit him
     heal his wounds, his aching lungs
     fish circle their eggs. "

   "I could," says Master Blaster.  "But what would be
the fun in that?"


   Master Blaster gets WikiBoy situated in the
sidecar.  "You ready?"
   "... hurts... so much..."
   "That's the spirit!" says Master Blaster.  He turns
the key and presses down on the accelerator.  The
cycle disappears with a blinding flash of light.

NEW YORK, 1996

   "What... doing... here...?"
   "Because of your screw-up," says Master Blaster, "I
need money to pay my taxes.  And I figured the
quickest way to score some easy cash would be to
become an actor.  And, so here we are-- New York City,
New York!"
   "Are... you... kidding...?"
   "Hold on, WikiBoy.  I'm going to make an edit."
   "You're... going... to... heal... m... my
   "No, I'm just going to edit away the annoying
ellipses between your words.  You're going to keep
those wounds, so that you have some sense of
responsibility for your actions."
   WikiBoy changes the subject.  "How long do you
think it will take to make the money that you need?"
   "Well, it's hard to get noticed in this town.  New
York is the city of a million dreamers dreaming a
single dream: sweet success, their name in lights! 
With the hustle-bustle, the back-stabbing, the endless
auditions and call-backs, the crushing hand of fate...
taking all that into consideration... I'd say it'll be
a couple days."


   An attractive-looking young woman approaches Master
Blaster as he helps WikiBoy into the room.  "Is this
your first audition?" she asks.
   Master Blaster sniggers.  "Someone obviously can't
read the heading in capital letters."
   She turns her attention to WikiBoy.  "What's wrong
with your friend?  He looks terrible."
   "Um... he has AIDS...?"
   WikiBoy takes umbrage.  "Did you-- did you just
give me AIDS?"
   Master Blaster smirks at the actress.  "Well, no, I
didn't give him AIDS..."
   "You gave me AIDS!" yelps WikiBoy.


   "Way to ruin my first audition," says Master
Blaster as they head on their way out the door.  "I
didn't even get to try out and..."
   "Wait!" comes a voice from inside.  "Come back!"
   Master Blaster turns to see the writer of the play
he was trying out for.  Man.  What an awkward
sentence.  Let me try this again.  Master Blaster
turns to see the playwright.  Does that work?  The
fact that he was trying out for the playwright's play
is kind of implied, isn't it?


   "You don't even need to try out," says the
playwright.  "None of the actors in there have any
real experience with what my play is really about!"
   "And what's that?"
   "The crass exploitation of the AIDS epidemic!  This
way, I can steal the plot of an opera, and no one will
realize that I have no ideas of my own!"
   "You're offering me a part?"
   "I'm giving you the part!  You have to take it! 
What are your terms?"
   "I need two thousand and forty-six dollars."
   "When do we open?"
   "In four weeks."
   "Nuh-uh.  No can do.  Make it tonight."
   "Yes, tonight."
   "It'll be tough... but... damn, no other actor has
what you've got!  We'll just have to work on your


   In our universe, the atrociously bad musical RENT
made lots of lots of money and revitalized the
Broadway musical.  Many upper-middle class white
teenagers took the story to heart, as they identified
so deeply with the starving (but romantic) bohemians
living in rancid poverty.
   In 2005, it was made into a film, directed by Chris
Columbus, which took liberties with the uber-emo
musical and yet, somehow, managed to make it even
   In our universe, Adam Pascal played the part of
Roger, and playwright-composer Jonathon Larson died
before the show opened.  But in the Looniverse, not
only is Jonathon Larson still alive, but Master
Blaster played the role of Roger.
   This had a pronounced impact on the show's critical


   "Five hundred twenty-five... poop.  How's it go,


   "Ruined," says the playwright.  "Ruined!"
   "Oh, shut up!" says Master Blaster.  "Your play was
shitty anyway."
   "That it was," came a voice.  "In fact, you were
the only bright spot in it!  I love how you kept
saying poop when you forgot your line.  It was most
   "Who're you?"
   "My name is Lorne Michaels.  How would you like to
be a star?"
   "Will you pay me two-thousand and forty-six
   "Consider it done."


   "Everyone," says Lorne Michaels, "this is our new
cast member, Robert Ramirez!  He's already got a lame
recurring character and everything."
   "What's the character?" asks one of the SNL cast
members, who would be named if I ever bothered to
watch SNL (which I would do if they ever bothered to
be funny).
   "Well, he's an actor who always forgets his lines. 
And when he does, he says, poop!"
   "Bwahahahaha!" exclaim the writers in unison. 
"He's going to say poop!"  They all agree that this is
a most excellent idea.


   "This is the best response we've ever gotten!" says
Lorne.  I'll call him Lorna from now on, because it's
a girl's name.  Lorna.  Tee-hee.  "We've gotten
hundreds of phone calls already from an ecstatic
audience!  And our guest stars are all demanding to
have a scene with you!  They all love the Poop Guy!"
   "That's great," says Master Blaster.  "And my
   "Here you go," says Lorna.  Tee-hee.  "Say, I have
a" BWAHAHAHAHA.  Lorna.  Oh, shit.  That's funny. 
Lorna.  Woo.  Breathe, Tom, breathe.  "I have an idea.
 Let's do a lame movie about your lame SNL recurring
character.  We'll call it, POOP GUY TAKES A SHIT."
   "That does sound tempting," says Master Blaster. 
"I'll only do it on one condition."
   "Go right ahead."
   "I want..."
   "Wait a second.  Do something for me first?"
   "Say poop."
   "Bwahahahaha!" laughs Lorna.  "That's so god-damn
funny."  Wait, let's change his last name too.  Let's
change it to Michelle.  Lorna Michelle.  Now that's
god-damn funny.
   "My condition is this: wait until April 17, 2006 to
begin production.  I'm going to be on hiatus from
acting until then."
   "But what about the recurring character?  If you
only appear once, it isn't recurring!"
   "Just use the same footage over and over again. 
It's not like the writing will be any different."
   "You drive a hard bargain.  But you've got yourself
a deal."


   "Master Blaster...!" says WikiBoy.  "I'm dying! 
I'm dying of AIDS!"
   "No, you're not," says Master Blaster.  "As it
turns out, your body has created a cure for AIDS in
your semen.  It can only be transmitted during sexual
intercourse.  Now, anyone who has sex with you will be
cured of AIDS!"
   "But that's so impractical!"
   "No it's not.  Because you've had sex with
   "Jesus," says WikiBoy.  "I'm a slut."  He pauses
for a moment.  "How was I?"
   "A little rough, truth be told," says Master
Blaster.  "But I kind of liked it."
   "Wait a second," says WikiBoy.  "You can't just go
ahead and cure AIDS!  What kind of effect will that
have on the world?"
   "Not much, really.  I mean, besides a couple of
shitty Tom Russell stories, when has anyone ever had
AIDS in the Looniverse?"


   If Tom had asked Saxon Brenton to use
Anal-Retentive Archive Kid, then Anal-Retentive
Archive Kid would appear in this spot and the reader
would discover whether or not Anal-Retentive Archive
Kid still is HIV-positive.
   But Tom didn't ask, so ARAK doesn't appear here.
   Lorna.  Tee-hee.


   "We're back!" says Master Blaster as the time-cycle
comes to a stop outside LNHHQ.  He notices a couple of
cops whom are eying the net.heroes suspiciously. 
"Good morning, officers!  Anything I can help you
   The cops grab WikiBoy.  "WikiBoy, you are under
arrest!  Anything you say or do can..."
   "What I'd do?  What I'd do?"
   "You know what you did, you scum," says the other
officer.  "You have nine hundred million charges of
rape and three billion charges of child sodomy to
answer for."
   "What?  What?"
   "Well," says Master Blaster, "you _did_ have sex
with every person on the planet.  On the bright side,
they might take your humanitarian work curing the AIDS
virus into consideration."
   The police officer growls: "I still cry myself to
sleep every night, you sick bastard."


   Master Blaster walks up to the counter.  "I'd like
to mail this."  He slides his tax return across the
counter to the post office employee.
   The employee eyes it carefully before putting it on
the scale.
   "Is everything alright?" says Master Blaster.  "Is
it insufficient postage?"
   "No," says the employee.  "It's exactly the right
amount of postage."
   "Oh," says Master Blaster, taken by surprise. 
"Okay, then.  Um... uh... oh, poop.  I forgot my line
   "CUT!" says Penelope Spheeris.  "That's great, Rob.
 Perfect.  You happy with that, or should we do
another take, Lorna?"
   "Call me Betty," says the producer.  "I have a
little girl name.  Tee-hee."


Master Blaster was created by Martin Phipps and is not
reserved.  Deja Dude was created by Martin Phipps and
used with his kind permission.

Dr. Stomper was created by T. M. Neeck and is not

The Ultimate Ninja and Sister State-the-Obvious were
created by wReam and thus are classified as wReam
characters. :-)

WikiBoy and Haiku Gorilla are my creations and
reserved; Pants Rabbit Lad and Polydactyly Lad were
also my creations, have only had a couple of
appearances each, and are now quite dead and thus

Feel free to resurrect Idiotic Decision Lad (my
character, making his first appearance here) if you

Also feel free to play off of the fed-withholding/tax
problem in this issue, with your own characters.

And, it's likely that the whole AIDS cure/WikiBoy rape
trial thing was reverted by one of his friends.



Tom Russell
Limited autographed dvds now on sale, directly from the filmmaker

"If a comic book, book, movie or novel is not somebody's fantasy 
then who wrote it and to whom does it appeal to?  In order for a 
shared universe to have a widespread appeal, it has to appeal on 
a primal level.  If somebody says superhero comics are just 'wish 
fulfillment' then he needs to explain what is entertainment that 
doesn't satisfy our wishes and what satisfaction at all you can get 
from it." -- Dr. Martin Phipps

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