[REPOST/LNH] Saviours of the Net #10a (of 2): 'Kitchen Sink Kickstart - Lots Happens, But Not Much Makes Sense'

Arthur Spitzer arspitzer at earthlink.net
Fri May 5 18:24:11 PDT 2006

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From: Saxon Brenton <Saxon.Brenton at uts.edu.au>
Newsgroups: alt.comics.lnh,rec.arts.comics.creative
Subject: [LNH] Saviours of the Net #10a (of 2)
Date: 4 Mar 1999 01:09:20 GMT

     Well, first up, this is a chaotic add-on crossover event-type thingy.
Reading the previous issues is probably - but is not guaranteed to be -
useful in understanding what's going on.
     To the best that I can figure out, the order of reading goes:
issues 1-3, pi, 4-6, 2pi, 7-8 and both versions of 9.
     (although the latter two should perhaps be labelled #9 and #3pi...)
     However, there have been a lot of retcons flying about, so all this
may be subject to change without notice.
     Now read on...

Blue Light Productions presents:

Saviours of the Net #10a (of 2)
'Kitchen Sink Kickstart - Lots Happens, But Not Much Makes Sense'

Written by Saxon Brenton
Art by Sc*tt McCl**d

Cover shows a very surprised looking Alt.Lord, who had been playing
puppeteer with a number of puppets who look like the Saviours of the Net.
However, the strings of the Saviours puppets have now been broken, and the
Saviours puppets are sitting on the ground in front of him with a number of
Legion of Net.Heroes puppets. All of the puppets are sitting up, and either
thumbing their noses at Alt.Lord, or sticking their tongues out at him, or
doing something similarly insulting.

Continuity Note:
     The action in the first half of this story flashbacks to cover events
about the time of SotN #6 and shortly afterwards, but hopefully I've got all
the bits clearly labelled.
     Or at least unclearly labelled in an interesting way.

Framing sequence:
A little while ago:
     Ultimate Ninja stood before the imposing LNH Mission Monitor Board,
which noted - in a highly summarised and indirect sort of way - the
whereabouts and activities of all the members of the Legion of Net.Heroes.
     Yes. All of them.
     The Board wasn't often used; in fact, most of the time it was locked
away in the Plot Device Room where Easily-Discovered Man Lite couldn't get
at it (I mean, can you imagine how much damage to continuity EDML could do
with it if he got his hands on it...?).
     Anyway, the Ninja noted all the teams of Legionnaires that had been
sent out in issue #6 in squads of three to deal with the rioting. Apart
from all the net.heroes 'on mission', there were, of course, always a
few like Marvel_Zombie Lad or the Legion of Occult Heroes who were listed as
'unavailable due to indefinite storyline hiatus'. He also noted that the
usual LNHers like Sig.Lad and Lost Cause Boy were 'still dead'.
     Of more pressing and vexing interest was that Self-Righteous
Preacher was listed on the Board as 'dead and satanically animated'.
     There were times when Ultimate Ninja really hated crossovers.


     But now, having established the framing sequence, we can move on
through a pastiche of scenes showing members of the Legion and the
Saviours of the Net working to overcome the chaos caused by the rioting;
and some of these will be Mark Gruenwald/Kurt Busiek style cameos of all
sorts of LNH characters who haven't had screen time in quite some while,
and whose reappearance - however brief - will warm the hearts of the
readers with nostalgia.


     "Zowie!" zowied Zowie!!!boy. He was a man in a grey suit and coke-
bottle glasses. He adjusted his bow-tie and looked at his companions.
"Well, we've been assigned to patrol the inner Western suburbs. Zowie!
That's a long way from here. We'd better get a move on."
     "Without transport?" queried the second person, Escher Boy. "I think we
should have grabbed a lift on one of the flight.thingees."
     "Zowie! It's probably an oversight in all the confusion."
     "Maybe," Escher Boy agreed doubtfully. "Well, look, I *could* just
fall over there, if I change my direction of gravity in the right way.
That's not going to help you two though."
     The third member of the group, Lackey Lad, shrugged. "I can
duplicate powers, so if you can 'fall' over there, then so can I."
     "Zowie! That just leaves me to take public transport then."
     "No, no, no," said Escher Boy. "There has to be a better way around
this. For all we know this may be some sort of test on the side to see
how well we handle getting to our assigned area in WestNet as well as any
rioting that's happening there." He crossed his arms in thought. "Okay then.
Lackey Lad, you have the power to duplicate the abilities of other
net.ahuman, right?"
     "Any other hero, is what my Writer said."
     "Okay then, someone with teleportation powers, or with flight and
strength to carry us both..." Then he saw Lackey Lad's look of panic. "Do
you actually have to be in the presence of someone to duplicate their
     Lackey Lad looked blank. "I don't know. I haven't had enough postings
to find out."
     Escher Lad shrugged. "Then what have you got to loose?"
     "Okay then, let's try it out." He struck a dramatic pose. Suddenly,
his blue and black bodysuit took on an armoured look, and Lackey Lad
declaimed, "Ha! Yes! It is so! Though it is but a tiny fraction compared
to the insurmountable might of Kid Kirby, I have nevertheless tapped into
the seething cosmic forces beyond mortal comprehension! Stand back
companions, whilst I create appropriate transportation for us." And with
that the newly apotheosised omni-sidekick began drawing bits and pieces
of nigh incomprehensible KirbyTech out of what seemed like thin air.
Seconds later, he was finished. "It is done. This geo-magnetic skysled
shall suit our purposes. Quickly aboard. Our destiny awaits!"
     The other two scrambled aboard. "Zowie!" Zowie!!!boy zowied as the
skysled lifted off. "These crazy plot devices really work."


     "It's the end of the world!" screamed the guy with the dishevelled
business suit as he fired off another round with the shotgun. "We're all
gonna die and go to Net.Hell!"
     "Nobody's going to be dying," Lava Lamp disagreed as he arrived at
the midtown scene of rampage. All about the place were overturned cars
and broken storefront windows. Distant fights could be heard, but for the
moment this guy seemed to have chased everyone else off - or at least,
everybody still capable of running, Lava Lamp reflected as he spied some
wounded people lying bleeding in the Perez-style rubble.
     The hysteric's eyes bulged as he caught sight of LL. "You!" he
gibbered, pointing a wildly gesticulating finger at the net.hero. "You're
one of them, the Saviours of the Net. The Apoca.lisp is upon us, and you're
here to save us. You're a *sign*!" And then he began blasting away at LL
with his firearm.
     Lava Lamp called on the powers of his namesake that he carried, and
erected a shield around his assailant, enclosing him in on all sides with a
wall of lava but leaving the enclosure open at the top. He had no idea how
much ammunition the other had, but suspected that with his penchant for
indiscriminate shooting - which was still ongoing from inside the lava
barrier - that he'd run out soon enough.
     That done, Lava Lamp looked around, assessing which of the wounded
to help first and then getting to work.
     He felt a sense of grim satisfaction about the situation, a strange
thrill of accomplishment that being able to help others always brought to
him. And of course, any public display of good deeds would work towards
helping to establish the reputation of the Saviours of the Net. And once
that was done..., well, then the plan could proceed for conquering the
     Lava Lamp pulled up short and shook his head. Where had that thought
come from? *What* plan to conquer the net? He didn't know anything about...
     But he did. Like a big fish rising up from a deep pool came the
memory of the original conclave of net.villains to masquerade as
net.heroes to lull the public into a false sense of security, a plan which
had later had to be slightly modified when Adler Stim had happened upon
     And then there was Alt.Lord. For a second Lava Lamp wondered who in
the world Alt.Lord, before recalling that, of course, Alt.Lord was the
extra-dimensional invader who had sent his net.ahuman lackeys through to
the Looniverse to masquerade as net.heroes in preparation for the wresting
control of this world; an attempt at subversion resting on the terrible
secret of merchandising the mugs and t-shirts!
     Lava Lamp reeled as a sense of vertigo swept over him. He leaned
against a wall and tried to clear his head of all the contradictory
details and motivations, and then noticed that is hand was trembling.
     Pushing these feelings of anxiety aside, he suddenly became acutely
aware of the distant sounds of rioting. Was this the reason that this
terrible anarchy was happening? Was everybody else being swept with
conflicting memories of being Evil imposter clones? Was that why everyone
was going berserk and rioting? [No, they're rioting because of the influence
of Anti-Christ Lad. Your problem something completely
different: rampant retconning - Footnote Girl]
     A sense of impending doom overtook Lava Lamp. Hurriedly he called
for an ambulance and finished bandaging the wounded in the area, guessing
full well that in the current state of anarchy it could be ages before help
     Then he began to head back towards the headquarters of the Saviours.
He needed to talk with Captain Killfile about this...
     Although by the time he reached there his memory would change
(again...) and he would have barely any recollection of the confusion
that he had just experienced. Instead, he would fall into planning with
Captain Killfile, and only by accident unearth the mystery of the shifting
pasts [as seen in _Saviours of the Net_ #6 - Footnote Girl].


     Mojodog was quite sure that his current partners were insane. I
mean, like, completely and utterly around the twist insane. Not to be
confused with, say, being a talking dog with a speech impediment who wore a
mask; that was just contextually amusing.
     He hoped he could get this over with real soon so that he could go
back to hanging out with Marcy and Loopy.
     "YODEL-AY-BOMB!! Excelsior! Bring on the babes, for I, the Great and
Powerful Oozelfinch, will require curvaceous females from the cover of
Swimsuit Issues to help celebrate in the aftermath of this most bodacious
victory!" cried the Great Oozelfinch, letting loose another atomic yodel at
the crowds of rioters. Or what used to be crowds of rioters. Mojodog
suspected that at the moment they probably constituted 'targets'.
     "Ah-HA! Have at thee, abominable spawn of evil! Adherence to the
'Evil Overlord list of things not to do' will not save you now! Tremble,
before the awesome might of... The Red Herring! Goo-goo-gachoo!" cried
the Red Herring. The mid-sized fish flying about in a cape seemed to be
enjoying itself, but was causing immense amounts of property damage.
Weren't we sent out here to prevent property damage? wondered Mojodog.
     Then Mojodog noticed someone sneaking up with an assault rifle,
preparing to take shots at the 'finch and the Herring. He'd probably also do
quite a bit of damage to the other people in the area, rioters or not.
Mojodog stood up from where he had been sitting watching the antics of the
other two LNHers, wandered up behind this fellow, and then bit him on the
leg. Hard. The miscreant gave a satisfying scream and collapsed on the
ground, clutching his calf.
     Mojodog leaned in close and informed him, "Rhou will rhay rhill and
rhehave rhourself, or I will rhark rhy rhent all orer rhou."
     "I'll be good! I'll be good!"


     On a building roof high above downtown Net.ropolis, three net.heroes
were searching.
     "So, where is he?" Zeal asked.
     "Don't know," replied Hell Catalyst. "I could have sworn he was
around here..."
     Meanwhile, Munchkin Man was eyeing the rioting down below at street
level. "We should be down there," he said. "Righting wrongs and beating
the crap out of bad guys and building up our experience points levels."
     Zeal raised an eyebrow. Hellcat pouted and said, "Oh, phooey,
Munchie. Try not to think in black and white so much. Not everyone's a
bad guy, and there's more to being a net.hero than beating up. There's
helping people, and that's much more important."
     Munchkin Man didn't raise an eyebrow in return. He was essentially
incapable of anything so subtle, so instead he expressed his disbelief by
staring at Hellcat as though she grown a second head. "Well *I* wanna
beat up bad guys!" he snarked. And because he was such an obscenely lucky
little bastard, his desire was almost instantly fulfilled.
     "Foolish net.heroes! Your doom is upon you!" claimed a squeaky
voice. "Turn and face... The Twisted Lemming!"
     The Legionnaires whirled to face the newcomer. It was indeed a
twisted lemming: a humanoid rodent who stood upright to a height of just
over a meter, even though he did walk with a hunched back. One eye was
squinted almost closed, while one arm was disproportionately large and
muscled compared to the other.
     Munchkin Man didn't even have to think, he was already rushing
towards the Lemming with sword drawn even before he had quite finished
turning to look at the rodent. The Lemming laughed disdainfully and waved a
hand (a paw? A hideously disfigured appendage? Something like that...) and
all three LNHers found that they could not move.
     "What have you done?" demanded Zeal, struggling against whatever
restraint held them all in place. Munchkin Man snarled; he was not used
to being in absolute control, and he did not like it.
     The Lemming laughed again. "And now," he proclaimed "with my
immense mental powers, I shall make *you* jump off the roof."
     .oO( That is not what I would call a quality net.villain scheme, )
thought Hellcat.
     Jerkily, like marionettes, the three LNHers began to move towards
the edge of the roof. "I knew I should have worn my +5 ring versus mental
domination by rodents!" complained Munchkin Man.
     "No, guys, this is like, just so icky," called Hellcat. "Don't jump
off the roof." The three slowed to a halt under the effects of Hellcat's
powers of persuasion (including Hellcat herself, by means of some pretty
impressive 'bootstrapping').
     "No! You must jump off the roof!" cried the Lemming.
     "Resist! Don't jump of the roof."
     "Jump! jump!"
     "Don't jump! Don't jump!"
     "Keep... his... power... occupied... Hellcat," grunted Munchkin Man.
"I think... I... can... just... about move... my arms." With hideous effort
and agonising slowness, the Little Blue Pest From Oz was able to draw forth
his bow and arrow and aim it, with forethought and malice, at the Lemming.
Something that scared the crap out of the Lemming, let me tell you.
     "How can you do that when we still can't move?" complained Zeal.
     Munchkin Man gave a feral grin at the sight of the Twisted Lemming
backing away for cover as MM drew aim at him. In answer to Zeal he said,
"I put a whole mess of points into my willpower bonuses, and combined
that with a rule from a supplement that was never repealed so that I can
always resist mental domination on a natural roll of 20, no matter how
powerful the telepath is."
     "Did you understand any of that?" asked Zeal of Hellcat. Hellcat,
concentrating hard though she was, spared enough effort to shake her head.
     The Lemming, realising that despite everything the LNHers were going to
resist jumping of the roof, turned and ran. Munchkin Man fired the arrow. It
skewered the Lemming right through the leg, pinning him to the roof.
     "Oh, I was afraid you were going to kill him," breathed Hellcat.
     Munchkin Man looked at her in bewilderment. "In a superhero setting?
You get more points for capturing villains."


And then there are some Legionnaires who haven't been out of the public
view, but whom it would be neat to see in a guest shot anyway:
     "LOOK!" snarled Mouse, spinning around and pointing an angry finger
at the man in blue jeans and t-shirt who - improbable as it seemed - was
the casually dressed world-beating net.villain Tsar Chasm. "We do NOT
need you tagging along like this."
     "Yes you do," he countered, smiling calmly and a trifle smugly." How
are you going to make up your team quorum of three otherwise?"
     She glared at him. "We'll team up with Figment Lad," she said with
gritted teeth.
     "He's with Sister-State-The-Obvious and Mylar Boy," he counter
smoothly. "I checked the Mission Monitor Board as we were leaving."
     Personally Mouse suspected that he may have *rigged* the Mission
Monitor Board, just to hang around her and pester her because he knew
that his presence would be a constant annoyance to her. (And perhaps
trick her into revealing where she was keeping his baseball cap that
she'd nicked off wi... ah, that is to say, that she'd confiscated as a
trophy of war.) [in _Return Of Tsar Chasm_ #6 - Footnote Girl]
     "Now now Mouse," trilled Writers Block Woman, stepping between the
two. "This is no way to behave when the city is imperilled and lives are
at risk. If you really have such strong objections, then think of it as a
police procedural story where Two Completely Mismatched Partners Have To Get
Along To See Justice Done. Though personally I fail why you have
*any* objections at all." WBW slipped her arm through his and began to
lead him onwards, making small talk as the headed off. "So tell me Kid G, I
don't think I've seen you around much. Have you only just recently
returned after a hiatus caused by a lazy Writer?"
     "You could say that. Although there were legal reasons why I have to
return as well..."
     "Oh, legal reasons. Law suits. Lawyers! Dreadful creatures. Let me
tell you about the time we had to deal with some lawyers..." and with that
Writers Block Woman launched into an extended description of 'The Great
Green Card Quest' in _Writers Block Woman (and Mouse)_ #s 6-8.
     As Tsar Chasm/Kid G's eyes began to glaze over, Mouse did what she
does best: go into slow burn. "It's only a guest appearance. It's only a
guest appearance. It's only a guest appearance. With any luck it'll all
be retconned away by the end of issue 7." Then a thought occurred to her.
"It had BETTER be retconned away by issue 7. I have *no* idea where this
fits into my continuity."
     You and me both Mouse.  You and me both.


     Oh! And the frogmen! Let's not forget the frogmen that the Human
Aquarium fought back in Saviours of the Net #3!
     In the sewers beneath the streets of Net.ropolis, an unholy ritual
was taking place. Inhuman amphibians of a Lovecraftian bent murmured a
susurration of "...watermelon cantaloupe, watermelon cantaloupe...".
     Then a fishman, completely out of place in this meeting, wandered
in, stopped short when he saw the others, and completely forgot about
delivering the report from the engineering department of his starcruiser.
Corporal Nembrul blinked at the cultist frogmen. The cultist frogmen blinked
at Corporal Nembrul.
     Corporal Nembrul had no idea of where he was, or even that he was no
longer in rec.arts.sf.star-wars.misc at all, but the Mon Ca.line.mari
starship crewman instinctively realised that the primitive gathering
before him was no the sort of place that it was safe for a civilised and
rational person to be. He started backing away. The others stared at him
as he ducked out of sight and ran for it.
     Then: "Capture him!" screamed the cultist leader. "Sacrifice him for
the greater glory of Father Dir.gon and Mother Hypertext.dra!"
     (Okay okay, I admit that this bit is not only completely silly, but
that I also have no idea of what possible use it could be to any other
Writer who follows after me. Methinks I'd better can it with the flash-
backs and get back to the main plot.)


     The framing sequence ended, and Ultimate Ninja turned away from the
Mission Monitor Board. The reports of the events that had taken place
earlier were moderately interesting from a tactical point of view, but
that was then, and this was now (whenever 'now' actually was).

That was part one of _Saviours of the Net_ #10. Part two will follow right
after this commercial break:

          Sig.Lad looks up from the bar with a winning smile. "Looking for
     good company without all the hassles of a restricting continuity? A
     place with a friendly atmosphere, and the best damn froppucinos in
     town? Then come on down to the RACCCafe."
          Scene cuts to shot of RACCCafe interior, with Cheeezar serving
     drinks to regulars, including Rebel Yell, LyfeSukkyr, Bombastus von
     Zeitgeist (which means this must be old footage, since Cornelius
     later gave up his Bombastus pseudonym), Twister, Example-Character
     Lad, and Tempest. In the background Brain Boy is playing the piano.
          Sig.Lad in voiceover: "We're open twentyfour hours a day, with
     house band of RACC's Most Dangerous Band, as featured at the annual
     RACCie awards." Scene pans across to finish with abovementioned band,
     with Diva Woman and Uplink, Alan Covenant, Badger, Easily-Discovered
     Man, Plotline Lad, and Arsenal. In the background Oozelfinches are
     on the dance floor with the Solid Gold Dancers, shakin' their booties
     to tunes that have nothing to do with what the band is playing.
          Continued voiceover: "So for a good night out, come on down to
      the RACCCafe, we're you're always welcome."
Saxon Brenton     City library of the Uni of Technology, Sydney, Australia
Saxon.Brenton at uts.edu.au

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