SG: Sporkman #9 - A New Disaster

Greg Fishbone gfishbone at
Wed Jan 9 21:34:05 PST 2008

     Rudy Giuliani gripped the podium at the SNUCCI Republican Debate.
It was hard to keep track of every debate in the presidential
campaign, but Rudy was pretty sure he would have opted out of this one
if his handlers had told him that SNUCCI didn't actually stand for
Supreme National University of Christopher Columbus Impersonators. Or
Sarcastic Nuns United to Crush Chinese Imperialism. Or even the
Society of Neighborly Unicorns Crazy about Chocolate Ice-cream.

     Instead, the banner above his head read,  "Today's debate
sponsored by the Seriously Nasty Undead Cthuloid Cultists,
Incorporated." The live audience consisted of blasphemous, gibbering
acolytes of the Cthulu cult, and the debate was moderated by the
re-animated corpse of talk show host Bill O'Reilly.

     "Senator McCain," said the undead shambling corpse. "What is your
position on bringing Cthulu back into our altiverse to destroy the
unbelievers and rule over an eternal wasteland of undead horrors?"

     Rudy watched rival ponder the question. "Hmm. I think I'd be against that."

     "Would you? Are you sure?"

     "Pretty sure, Zombie Bill. Altiversal destruction is antithetical
to everything I stand for."

     "Wrong answer, Mr. McCain!" At Zombie Bill's signal, a horde of
zombies rushed the stage to tear the screaming senator apart.

     Rudy had mixed feelings as he watched his fellow candidate's
demise. On the one hand it would create a fresh pool of undecided
voters for him to tap into. But on the other hand, the splatter of
blood and brain bits on his suit jacket could make for an embarrassing
series of photos on the web.

     "Governor Spoonman," said Zombie Bill, indicating the candidate
on Rudy's other side.

     The Great and Mighty Spoonman, dressed in a plaid suit and white
domino mask, swallowed hard. "Yes?"

     "As a superhero turned business mogul turned politician, what
unique attributes do you possess that you feel might make you a more
appetizing morsel for Mighty Cthulu?"

     Spoonman patted his flabby midsection. "I come pre-tenderized."

     "Good answer, Governor. And now it's time for us to enter the No
Skin Zone!" Zombie Bill took out a large carving knife and proceeded
to cut and flay his own mottled skin away from the rotting muscle
underneath. His zomboid followers quickly did the same. "Are you
ready, Mr. Giuliani?"

     Rudy tried hard not to vomit at the sight of so many human-shaped
animated meat-puppets dripping putrid bits of flesh onto the stage.

     Skinless Bill O'Reilly may have smirked back at him, but it was
hard to tell with the talk icon's cheeks torn away to reveal his
entire jaw of rotten teeth. "Mr. Giuliani, how would your national
security policy protect Cthulu from terrorists?"

     "Ah, well, in the wake of Nine-Eleven--"

     The acolytes and cultists sat forward, suddenly riveted and at attention.

     "--naturally we can't allow the terrorists to dictate what we do,
or even what Cthulu does..."

     The acolytes and cultists started to grow restless again, gibbering softly.

     "...because things are different in a post-Nine-Eleven world." As
if responding to a magic spell, the audience again snapped to
attention and murmured appreciatively.

     "Good answer." The skinless zombie nodded. "And what's your view
on universal healthcare for Cthulu?"

     "Um... Nine-Eleven?" said Rudy, tentatively.

     The crowd cheered, "Woo! Woo! Woo!"

     "And tax cuts for Cthulu?"

     "Nine-Eleven," said Rudy, with growing confidence.

     "Woo-woo! Woo-woo-woo!" The audience did the wave.

     "And finally, the war in Iraq. Would you prefer to have our
soldiers brought home so that Cthulu could devour them here, or have
Cthulu travel to the Middle East and devour them there?"

     "Nine-Eleven," Rudy answered, without hesitation.

     The crowd surged forward onto the stage. Their features melted
and changed as they advanced. Their eyes bulged, large and yellow,
while the rest of their bodies became smaller, furrier, and more
ring-tailed. "Woo-woo! Woo-woo! Frink! Frink! Frink! P'tang!"

     Rudy startled himself awake. Thankfully, the debate had only been
a dream! His fellow Republican presidential candidates were gone,
Skinless Bill O'Reilly was gone, and all he had to wonder about was
why he was stuck in a ventilation shaft. And why his arms were tied
behind his back. And why his lips tasted vaguely of chloroform.

     The sound of approaching footsteps startled Rudy. He struggled in
his bonds to turn his head, and the sight of a familiar figure
horrified him. "Good afternoon, Mr. Mayor," said the undead zombie
version of Bill O'Reilly. "I hope you've had a pleasant nap." A pack
of rabid lemurs scampered all around the zombie's heels.

**  The Sporkarific Sporkman
**  Episode #9: A New Disaster
**  By Greg R. Fishbone
** Lemurs on a Dirigible #4 of 10
** Having achieved the height of fame, popularity, and power
** as the child hero, Sporkboy, Mickey Dunne finds himself
** friendless, broke, and haunted by a traumatic past. Can he
** pull himself together to save the world one more time?

     "So it wasn't all a dream!" Rudy exclaimed. "You really are a
member of SNUCCI!"

     Zombie Bill laughed. "We're not the same SNUCCI you might
remember from so many years ago. We're a kinder, gentler offshoot:
UNCLE, the Undead Not-So-Bad Cultists Limited Enterprise. We're
working to make a nicer, more peaceful, tastier world for the Great
Devourer's imminent return."

     "You'll never get away with this!" Rudy vowed.

     "Famous last words," Zombie Bill noted, raising an impressed
zomboid eyebrow. "And I should know because they're listed in my new
book, 'Famous Last Words' by Zombie Bill O'Reilly, on Page 81 in the
chapter on Last Word Cliches. So perhaps you'd like to reconsider? I'm
always looking for fresh new material for a possible sequel."

     Zombie Bill snapped his fingers and the lemurs advanced on Rudy
from all sides. "Nine-Eleven!" Rudy shouted, but this time his words
had no effect. The lemurs gnawed his legs and tore the flesh from his
arms, and all he could do was shout louder and more urgently:
"Nine-Eleven! Nine-Eleven! Nine-Eleveeeeeeenaaaugh!!!"

     "That'll do nicely," said Zombie Bill, jotting it down in his notebook.

* * *

     "Did anyone else hear that scream?" asked Ryan Seacrest, as the
VIP passengers gathered around the ventilation shaft where Rudy
Giuliani's trail ended.

     "I did," volunteered Lindsay Lohan. She took a long drink from
her martini glass to steady her nerves, followed by the contents of
the shaker and then a swig from the bottle of gin. "It was all like,
'Twelve-Thirteen! Twelve-Thirteen! Twelve-Thirteeeeeeeeenaugh!!!'"

     "No," said Dick Cheney, "it was more like, 'Eight Twenty-Seven!
Eight Twenty-Seven! Eight Twenty-Seveeeeeeenagh!!!'"

     "I'm not saying I heard a scream," said O. J. Simpson, "but if I
did hear it, it would have sounded like, 'No, O. J., please! Don't
escalate your spousal abuse into homicide! Don't kill me and that
waiter from the restaurant who came by to return the glasses I lost!
And whatever you do, don't use that big hunting knife while wearing
gloves that don't quite fit your hands! Aieeeeee!!!' If I heard it,
that is. Hypothetically."

     An uncomfortable silence followed, except for something that
sounded like sloppy chewing from the ventilation shaft. Samuel L.
Jackson piped up, "That motherfarker better not have snuck away for a
snack. Nobody walks out on one of my live performances!"

     "Why are you changing into Jedi robes?" asked Jeanette.

     Samuel paused with one arm poking into a set of brown hooded
robes he'd pulled out of his travel case. " Jedi robes? Just who do
you think I am, motherfarkin' Mace Windu? These are ordinary
ventilation shaft climbing robes, like anyone can get at motherfarkin'

     "And the lightsaber?" asked Mickey.

     "What, this?" Samuel removed the item from the belt of his robe
and pressed a button on its hilt. A four foot blade of purple light
emerged from one end with an electronic wooshing sound. It roared
softly and cast a purple glow as he waved it around. "Just an ordinary
motherfarkin' flashlight."

     "," said Hillary Clinton. "It looks just like the
lightsaber from--"

     "It's just a motherfarkin' flashlight," Samuel stated in a level voice.

     "It's just a motherfarkin' flashlight," Hillary agreed in a dull monotone.

     "There's nothing to see here," said Samuel.

     "There's nothing to see here," everyone mumbled in unison.

     "Y'all should return to your motherfarkin' seats."

     "We should return to our motherfarkin' seats," the VIP passengers
agreed, and soon only Mickey and Jeanette remained.

     "Actors' mind trick," Samuel explained. "It only works on people
with teeny-tiny brains, but luckily that covers most politicians and
everybody in the entertainment industry. "

     "Are you really going down there?" Mickey nodded toward the
ventilation shaft.

     "I have to," the actor stated.

     "Because it ees zee heroic thing to do?" asked Jeanette.

     "No, because it's in my motherfarkin' contract. I'm responsible
for keeping those motherfarkin' sheep together for the duration of my
show. That's what I get for modifying a Standard Birthday Party
Magician contract instead of getting a lawyer to draft an
entertainment contract from scratch."

     "And you must go with him," said Jeanette, giving Mickey a nudge.

     "Why?" asked Mickey.

     "Just a hunch."

     "I'm getting tired of your hunches, Jeanette. I'm not here to
save anyone's life. On this flight, I'm just an ordinary passenger."

     "Whatever you are, Mickey Dunne, ordinary ees not it."

     Mickey sighed and looked toward the ventilation shaft. "Okay, one
trip down the ventilation shaft and back. But if I do end up saving
this guy's life, I'm not accepting any blame if he goes and gets
himself elected president."

* * *

Meanwhile on the Coach Class Level...

     Number Thirteen jostled with other passengers at the one lavatory
serving the entire deck. He waved his driver's license and passport in
a fruitless attempt to move ahead in line. "I've been Number Thirteen
since I was created, see? You've only had that slip of paper for,
what, thirty minutes at most?"

     The woman with the slip of paper glared at him. "When the sign
says, 'Now Serving Number 013,' it won't be referring to you, no
matter how uncreative your parents were in the naming department.
You've got to take a number and wait along with the rest of us."

     The door folded open and the Queen of England squeezed out,
causing the digital sign to increment from "Now Serving Number 003" to
"Now Serving Number 004."

     The Queen waved her white-gloved hand daintily in front of her
face. "Wheeeee-ooooo! We would not go in there right now if we were




All will be revealed on the next episode of The Sporkarific Sporkman,
only on SUPERGUY!


I was stumped about what organization should be hosting the dream
sequence debate so I put a call out for suggestions--just another
example of how readership feedback is shaping this story and making it
better than anything I'd come up with on my own. SNUCCI which was
brilliant suggestion because: a) a cult of undead worshipers is just
what this story needed; and b) it gave me an excuse to fit Bill
O'Reilly into the plot. The cult of undead talk-show hosts was a
distinguished part of Superguy's past, which I hope I'm not botching
too badly with my own version.

The 2008 U.S. Presidential election in the Superguy altiverse is
shaping up to be fairly interesting now that Rudy's dead and Spoonman
is running as a Republican. I won't spoil things for anyone who is
seeing Spoonman now for the very first time, but his origin story is
recounted in the first Super Seven arc (issues #1 through #6) and he
remained a central figure through the entire run of the "Super Seven"
and "Preteen Patrol" series.

Greg R. Fishbone -
* President: Class of 2k7 -
* ARA: New England SCBWI -

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