Comic 1456 - Red Tape

26th Feb 2017, 9:00 PM
Red Tape
Average Rating: 5 (23 votes)

Author Notes:

Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:56 AM edit delete
very first. :D
Tokyo Rose 27th Feb 2017, 7:00 PM edit delete
Tokyo Rose
Since speculation's already running wild and free and gross in the comments section, I will state thus: No, the Cassians weren't used as sex toys. Aurelian saw them only as weapons, Valerius was a decent person and a faithful husband, and Decimus didn't fuck anything that couldn't feel shame, pain, and fear.

(Decimus also didn't hand out Cassians like party favors to anyone. Treating them as whores would have diluted their effectiveness as instruments of terror to keep his "allies" in line. If his buddies in the Senate or among the Praetorians wanted someplace to stick their dicks, Decimus had plenty of slaves, concubines, and/or palace servants around.)
Post a Comment


robnot 26th Feb 2017, 9:04 PM edit delete reply
All the Pickles 27th Feb 2017, 1:17 AM edit delete reply

Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 7:48 AM edit delete reply

Hydrargyrum 27th Feb 2017, 8:56 PM edit delete reply

@robnot, the First Committee has considered your application and denies it on the following grounds.

1) Failure to meet the minimum word length requirement.
2) Failure to say anything meaningful or relevant.
3) Failure to give proper consideration to the alt-text.
4) Failure to use proper capitalization and punctuation.

The requirement to cuss as effectively as Rose is waived for this page due to lack of grounds. Your failure to even try is, however, noted.

@All the Pickles, your application for last remains under consideration. Its nature is commendable but certain procedural difficulties do exist. As we're sure you understand, such matters take some time to resolve.
robnot 28th Feb 2017, 12:29 PM edit delete reply
ok.!! i see how it is.! done
no more comments from me.
megados 28th Feb 2017, 1:00 PM edit delete reply

robnot, I hope you don't mean that. No one is saying you shouldn't comment. Just some good natured ribbing is all :-)

Stormwind13 26th Feb 2017, 9:06 PM edit delete reply

Well I guess it is a good thing that no one has told Noctis to 'arrest' Ada for impersonating a human...
megados 26th Feb 2017, 9:10 PM edit delete reply

Well, they have found something to talk about, at least. Seeing Acantha like that makes me . . . sad. Hope they get to NT soon and get her fixed up!
Sandman366 27th Feb 2017, 4:26 PM edit delete reply
I bet if Teedee knew about those laws, she'd probably dare Noctis to arrest her. (It'd be an interesting result, at least...)
Timotheus 26th Feb 2017, 9:08 PM edit delete reply

And now, android Truth or Dare in orbit!
Speedy Marsh 8th Apr 2017, 8:17 PM edit delete reply
Loser sits on the roof, for the rest of the flight.
robnot 26th Feb 2017, 9:08 PM edit delete reply
? so Noctis. being a little vague?? ..
no not really , how to describe a technical job With out giving up state secrets ...
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 10:12 AM edit delete reply

I'm not sure it is giving up state secrets or just giving out ANY information, robnot. Noctis seems to like to make others WORK for their information, maybe in the hope they will weigh it more carefully if they had to struggle to gain it.
DLKmusic 27th Feb 2017, 2:22 PM edit delete reply

Noctis isn't always this vague.. She was actually fairly open about Cassian activity when discussing it with CeCi.

of course circumstances were much different then.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 2:46 PM edit delete reply
I didn't think she was being vague at all. She is concisely expressing the Cassian condition: they do what they are told, whatever they are told, by whoever happens to occupy the Throne. Unless you know something of the circumstances or personalities involved, there isn't really much more to add. "I am a tool. I do as directed by the hand that wields me."
Speedy Marsh 8th Apr 2017, 9:54 PM edit delete reply

Acantha wakes from her surgery, looks at Noctis, groggily, and says, "You said you were a tool! I heard you." *snrk*

Noctis: "She could not have heard that, could she?"

Ada: "No. The brain isn't able to process auditory input during warm cryo... I don't think. No... I'm sure..."

Noctis: "...!"

Ada: "What?! Don't look at me!"

*AutoDoc starts shaking uncontrollably*

Noctis: "What is its problem?"

Ada: "I have no idea!"

*in cyberspace, AutoDoc and Tokyo Rose double over on the virtual ground, hold their sides, and laugh incessantly*

Noctis: "TeeDee, do you have any idea what the problem is?"

TeeDee: "How should I know? This isn't canon."
Steven-Vincent 26th Feb 2017, 9:09 PM edit delete reply

"In whatever manner may be required." This line reminded me of the sicko who was in charge and made me think of what sort of warped things he may have 'required' them to do, that we've not even been shown.
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 7:49 AM edit delete reply

Reminds me of the discussion Noctis had with Malati about how the shadows have it better when the light of the throne shines brightest.
Fafhred 27th Feb 2017, 8:57 AM edit delete reply

I am fairly sure he would have personally 'tested' the cassians, whenever possible...
Dragonrider 26th Feb 2017, 9:09 PM edit delete reply

An answer that says nothing but speaks volumes.
robnot 26th Feb 2017, 9:17 PM edit delete reply
also i know its perspective,, but it looks like Noctis 's chair is moving behind Ada. last 2 panels makes it look like Noctis is now behind Ada.....
megados 26th Feb 2017, 9:27 PM edit delete reply

I think Noctis' and Acantha's seat was always a bit back, robnot. Theirs is the passenger seat. Ada's is the pilot's seat. I think it's to give the pilot an unobstructed view.
mjkj 26th Feb 2017, 10:33 PM edit delete reply

I think that are two panels what you see as the last one...
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 5:37 AM edit delete reply

Blowing up the third panel of the previous page, Go For Hop, it appears that Noctis and Acantha ARE way back from the console. I think that like modern cars (in America) the seats are movable and Noctis has hers ALL the way back to accommodate Acantha's body. Ada has hers up pretty tight so that she can get to all the controls. So Ada's looks like it is in front of Noctis' seat, because of the way they have them set.
mjkj 27th Feb 2017, 6:11 AM edit delete reply

That is true - and I never doubted that - I was answering the fact that they seem to be behind Ada, not besides her. which is because of that being two panels. you can see the divide on Noctis and Acantha's side slightly angled like a backslash \ - if you zoom in at the bottom of the panel you can see the different backgrounds - also at the top of the panel, next to the speech bubbles, to a lesser degree.

Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:12 AM edit delete reply

Yes the seats in the dart move forwards and back , Noctis's is alllll the way back and Acantha is laying on top of Noctis. Ada is up about 80% as she has long legs so her seat is comfortably placed so she can reach the control joystick on the center console
megados 27th Feb 2017, 8:40 AM edit delete reply

Oh! I didn't know you could move them!
Morituri 27th Feb 2017, 1:10 PM edit delete reply
It is utterly normal for the pilot seat in aircraft to be considerably in front of all other seats - even in a nominally side-by-side configuration it is rarely possible to bring a 'passenger' seat up to even with the pilot.

When you see a true side-by-side configuration in an aircraft, you also see two sets of controls (ie, that's not a passenger seat, that's a co-pilot seat).
robnot 27th Feb 2017, 1:09 PM edit delete reply
ok first,, seats did not move.. second i meant how it looked.. in those 5 panels it looked like the second seat moved from side to side too back to front...
like it was transforming to a sleeker form for speed...
megados 26th Feb 2017, 9:23 PM edit delete reply

Ada and Noctis have a lot to discover about each other. They have some common ground to start from, so at least they can learn more about each other, and Noctis can get a little idea of what she can expect. She is still in for a bit of a jolt when they get to New Troy though, I think.

Acantha looks so delicate and helpless.

The view outside remains impressive.
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 5:44 AM edit delete reply

Agreed megados, the view really looks like they are WAY up in the atmosphere. Which is always impressive (good job CentComm).

Acantha looks so fragile and helpless, megados because she IS! She is literally heartbeats away from dying! That is why Maxus sent the toughest guardian he could along with her to protect her.

Yeah they have a lot to learn from each other, not a great deal of time to do it in. The worlds they have lived in are so different, both of them are in for some surprises I think.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 6:54 AM edit delete reply
Evidence strongly suggests that Noctis is not the toughest guardian Maxus had available -- although I will allow that she is capable. And, as a reminder, Maxus can't send Noctis anywhere -- he is not her commanding officer. Noctis decided on her own -- after Maxus suggested it -- that (Nova Roma being on fire anyway), accompanying Lady Acantha Livius on her trip to New Troy was an idea whose time had come.
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 7:54 AM edit delete reply

In an odd way, I think it's Noctis that is the fragile one here.

She's *so* outside of her comfort zone, she will be in an unknown city, where a cyberpath lives, where the Centcomm AI rules, and no access to friends or allies. She will have to walk on eggshells around everyone.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 9:28 AM edit delete reply
She only has to walk on eggshells around anyone if she cares about what reaction she provokes and/or what damage she does. If she remains aloof, unconcerned, and immune to consequences, it is others who need to walk on eggshells, not her.
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:10 AM edit delete reply

Noctis is one of the fastest. The cassians in general are not tanks they are commandos and Ninjas fast and deadly. when they need tanks they build tanks.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 9:33 AM edit delete reply
Speed is a kind of armor. To assert otherwise, when we have already seen it used thusly, borders on ... disingenuousness.
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 10:34 AM edit delete reply

Yeah. When they want meatshields, they send in the army (or someone like Septimus). If they want someone that deals with all kinds of problems, they send a Cassian.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 11:14 AM edit delete reply

I'm kinda hoping that no one is going to try to harm Acantha, or do anything to Noctis. Then it should be more or less a non-issue. But we all know how that usually works out . . .
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 12:32 PM edit delete reply

Anything that Noctis does in New Troy will reflect badly on Acantha.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 12:45 PM edit delete reply
Really, @Sheela? Misdeeds carried out by Noctis before Acantha even regains consciousness will be laid to Acantha's tally? That seems an awfully pessimistic view of New Trojans. And it makes Noctis even more 'teflon-like' in that she can misbehave as much as she likes and never be personally held to account for it by the people she abuses.

I would have thought that, if the presumption in New Troy is that androids are people, not clockwork, then she would be presumed to be responsible for her own actions, even if it turned out later that this was not the case. Why would the first assumption be anything else?
Morituri 27th Feb 2017, 1:17 PM edit delete reply
No, Sheela is absolutely right. Acantha, conscious or not, is responsible for Noctis regardless of whether she's at fault for Noctis' actions.

This is true in most matters of oath and honor. Many people's first exposure to the idea is service in the military where, even if officers had no idea what the people under their command were doing and didn't order them to do it, they are responsible for that behavior.

Responsibility and blame are only coincident when the world is being fair. The world is never fair - and is not expected to be fair, at least not in that way - to officers and royalty.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 1:59 PM edit delete reply
'Responsible', 'Liable', 'Guilty', etc. are all overloaded terms that can easily be confused to no good effect (in my opinion) unless the discussion participants are careful to define their terms. Allow me, @Morituri, to propose a thought experiment ...

Consider that Acantha's medical treatment has complications, causing her to enter a coma so that she is not expected to regain consciousness for the foreseeable future. While Acantha remains unconscious -- having never consciously been able to exercise even a moment's authority over any Nova Roman -- the Roman Senate convenes and confirms Paul of the House of Claudius as the Imperator of Rome, as the next in line of succession. Noctis then goes on a rampage, slaughtering New Troy citizens willy-nilly until finally making her escape out into the wastes. Do we then put Acantha's comatose body on trial for Noctis' misdeeds because Noctis' behavior reflects on Acantha? Does it make a difference whether Noctis' rampage is before or after the confirmation hearings in Nova Roma?

I agree that Noctis' misdeeds reflect on Nova Roma, but think it an irrational and unreasonable position to assert that Acantha embodies Nova Roma in her person when she has been unable to even be informed as to her new responsibilities. And, if you want to argue that everyone in New Troy is irrational and unreasonable, you can do so. But to me, as I said, it seems ... pessimistic.

Now, once she is competent to be informed of her new responsibilities, I agree that is an entirely different matter.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 2:49 PM edit delete reply

I think, that as usual, the truth is somewhere in the middle. Sheela, I think, is right that Noctis' misbehavior could reflect badly on Acantha, but Acantha isn't necessarily to be held responsible. One has to remember, that she is heiress to the Throne but is yet too young to assume it. Maxus has yet to be decided Lord Regent, as well. At this point in time, it could be said that Nova Roma is leaderless, as far as anyone assuming responsibility goes. So as I see it, since Acantha would be present in New Troy, she would likely be an unwitting, unwilling lightening rod, but in reality, Noctis would be responsible for her own behavior, and I think Noctis is smart enough to know it.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 3:05 PM edit delete reply
Whereas I think responsibility for Noctis' current deeds (good or ill) are like checks being written on Nova Roma's account. They will eventually fall to whoever ends up with the bankbook. At this time, I think most of us expect this to eventually be Acantha, but if someone else's butt ends in the hot seat by the time the bill comes due, it will (in my opinion) fall to them, not her.
Morituri 27th Feb 2017, 5:58 PM edit delete reply
Responsibility attends the office, not the person. If someone else is affirmed as Emperor or Regent, the behavior of all agents of Nova Roma (including the blueshells and Cassians) becomes their responsibility - even if the events occurred before they took office.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 6:11 PM edit delete reply
In that, @Morituri, we agree.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 6:33 PM edit delete reply

It is something we can all agree on!
Morituri 28th Feb 2017, 11:44 AM edit delete reply
So many words. They're distinct concepts but often conflated.

Blame: Others are convinced that you did it (I misused this one myself, above).

Guilt: You are convinced that you did it.

Responsibility: Had you been able to fulfill your duties it would not have happened.

Liability: It is your duty to ameliorate the damage.

Innocence: You know nothing about it.

Nocence: You know something about it.

Perpetrator: The person who actually did it.

megados 28th Feb 2017, 5:14 PM edit delete reply

I have also been guilty of interchanging some of these. It's good to have a reminder.
Morituri 28th Feb 2017, 8:53 PM edit delete reply
It amuses me somehow that a person who actually didn't do something can be guilty of it if they themselves believe that they did it.

Drunken blackouts, suppressed memories, psychotic breaks, retrograde amnesia, damage that proceeded from other causes when they are convinced that their own mistake might have led to it, Bruce Banner waking up near a body that's been ripped in half, etc ... stuff does happen. And then you have a guilty party who actually didn't commit the crime.
Gilrandir 28th Feb 2017, 10:59 PM edit delete reply
There is a difference in common usage between "being guilty of {X}" and "feeling guilty for {X}". One can, in fact be considered "guilty of {X}" while believing oneself to be "innocent of {X}" because that particular usage does not generally adhere to the definitions you provided earlier. Because of the way court verdicts are returned, it is possible to be guilty of X, without being guilty of X, if a jury determines that you are guilty of X even though you know yourself to be innocent of X. ^_^
Timotheus 27th Feb 2017, 8:13 PM edit delete reply

When they want 9 out of 10 people to not know what happened and the tenth person to have suffered severe mental shock from knowing what happened, they send the cassians.
robnot 27th Feb 2017, 2:45 PM edit delete reply
fastest.. i am reminded of Noctis blocking incoming fire with her sword... an the comment " nobody told me they could do that! " ,, #1326
Sheela 28th Feb 2017, 4:57 PM edit delete reply

... and amazingly, I didn't use a single one of those words !
Combat Medic Z 26th Feb 2017, 10:05 PM edit delete reply

I agree, the view outside is impressive, and the comic just looks great overall. Great work! I suspect that Ada and Noctis will get along well, as long as life doesn't throw conflicting duties their way. I hope things will work out well for Acantha. Ada is certainly hauling ass big time!
mjkj 26th Feb 2017, 10:31 PM edit delete reply

Nice view...

@alt text: indeed. I guess she thought she needed an ice breaker? ;)

Haegan2005 26th Feb 2017, 11:16 PM edit delete reply

A really good job with Acantha looking helpless. I also like the back and forth between the two. It says volumes about many potentials. I happen to agree with the others that "Whatever is required" covers a lot of territory. But just what is in that territory that the devious duo has thought of? That is the page turning question!
plymayer 27th Feb 2017, 12:19 AM edit delete reply

Noctis is quite beautiful in her way. Hauntingly so. But she would scare me in bed.
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 5:47 AM edit delete reply

Totally agree, plymayer. Noctis does look hauntingly beautiful.

I think she would scare the crap out of me, in or out of bed. She is death personified, if you do anything she doesn't like (unless she has been ordered to NOT kill you).
megados 27th Feb 2017, 6:03 AM edit delete reply

I also agree that Noctis is beautiful, hauntingly, and strikingly so. (Kudos to Centcomm) I differ, though, in that I do not fear her, as I present no danger to her, her charge, or to Nova Roma. I wouldn't think that either Maxus, nor Acantha would have reason to order her to kill me, and Noctis doesn't just kill for spite, so logically, (and Noctis IS logical), I should have nothing to worry about. As far as in bed? I never really thought about it. Hmmmm. **e: (oh, I just read that she doesn't have That Mod!) I don't know if Noctis does "cuddly". (She could, I just don't know if she would.) These are guesses, of course.
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 9:28 AM edit delete reply

Rose actually designed her base look. I just refined the shaders and all that.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 10:58 AM edit delete reply

Kudos to both of you, either way you slice it! :-)
Morituri 27th Feb 2017, 1:23 PM edit delete reply
I don't think I would be particularly scared. Careful, yes, but not scared. Noctis needs a reason to kill people. Treat her with utmost respect and be no threat to the throne or Nova Roma, and I think you've not much to fear.

Of course, 'bed' would be an utterly weird situation, given that she has been shown 'sleeping' in a standing position and has never shown any evidence of a sex drive. If she were in my bed, I think I would be - respectfully and without making any assumptions - asking her why.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 2:58 PM edit delete reply
I'd probably apologize for being in her bed and look to make a quick, quiet, non-controversial exit before the malfunctioning Cassian could start doing something to me that I'd regret. Once I'd reached minimum safe distance, then I could start making inquiries about what exactly was going on. Given what we know passes for 'due process' in Nova Roma it might not be my bed any more, even if it was when I laid down in it.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 3:05 PM edit delete reply

Exactly, Morituri, in other words, treat her as you should treat people in general, and you should be fine.

Gilrandir, you don't say how you got into this situation, but if I were already there, as you seem to have progressed to, I wouldn't run away, I would probably talk to her to start with, and find out more about what she was thinking, if I could, and go from there. I don't know her well enough to discern her motive, so I would want to find out. I honestly don't think she would just start doing things to you. I think, given her own choices, she seems to give people the same respect that she wants given to her. That's fair, isn't it?
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 3:36 PM edit delete reply
Cassians, under the most recent regime, aggressively cultivated a reputation for being instruments of uncompromising state-sponsored terror in service to the Throne. If you choose to respond to them as though they held any obligation of civil conduct to you, rather than to the Throne, you are free to do as you wish. That doesn't seem the prudent course to me. For myself, it seems to me that, unless I occupy the Throne, the best I can hope for from a Cassian is to be ignored and everything else just gets worse. (It might be different if, for example, the scenario was that I was getting mugged and a Cassian came around the corner. But the scenario was that I was in bed and she with me -- no other information given.)

Perhaps in the idyllic days of yesteryear things may have been different (or at least seemed different because systemic abuses were less common, and therefore less noticeable), and perhaps in days to come things may be different. There's really just not much data to go on as yet.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 4:03 PM edit delete reply

I certainly see your point, and your reasoning behind it. I think that it would hold rock-solid if all Cassians were exactly the same. We have been shown, however, that they are not. They all have their own personalities, and idiosyncrasies. I don't paint them all with the same brush, especially after having witnessed the range of personalities they have. I wouldn't necessarily assume the worst; I don't immediately think, "Ewwww, Cassian. or Eeeek! Cassian!" Perhaps if I had never seen, or heard of, or know nothing about a particular individual, I might act similarly, but in the exact case we are discussing, I would not. We have gotten to know something of the kind of person Noctis is, and I had already stated that I would trust her, based on what I consider solid information. I would give her the benefit of the doubt.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 4:16 PM edit delete reply
Regardless of their personalities, their inhibitors (which supersede their free will - except for Malati, who was a special case) are supposed to all be the same. So they would seem to be the principal thing with which you should concern yourself. ^_^ We'll see how things change from here.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 4:26 PM edit delete reply

I am guessing of course, but under the scenario here as it stands, the inhibitor should be completely irrelevant unless:

You pose a threat to Nova Roma, and she ignores it.

You pose a threat to the Throne, and she ignores it.

You pose a threat to her charge, and she ignores it.

She is given an order to kill you, or harm you, and she ignores it. (Remember, that at this point in time, no one exists who can legally give her a direct order)

The only time, as I understand it, that an inhibitor comes into play, is when it's individual acts against those things they are charged with upholding. Otherwise, it's inert. That's my understanding of it. Malati wasn't a special case IMHO, she tried to subvert her orders, and the inhibitor was activated. Her recourse was to rip out her own MACCS.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 4:32 PM edit delete reply
But if she's just there in your bed with no information, you don't know if any of those might be true -- because we have seen Cassians act on the basis of erroneous information. What you might think is irrelevant, her opinion is the only one that matters. Accordingly, I would opt for prudence. ^_^

Malati was a special case because one of things the inhibitor prevented was suicide. (Which we know from discussions about Nox.) Malati was able to overcome her inhibitor and act in accordance with her free will in spite of that, achieving suicide, which other Cassians (such as Nox) have been unable to do. That is why I say Malati (glory to her name) was a special case.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 4:37 PM edit delete reply

Again, I understand. Noctis has experience with erroneous information. Remember the child? Noctis is careful, and barring the person rising to the level of Monster, she has learned to try to verify. Also, she makes no secret when she is about to kill someone, and I sincere!y doubt she would need to resort to the subterfuge of joining them in bed to do it.

I will agree to the fact that Malati was special in that she possessed the strength to overcome the inhibitor, yes. And yes, mad respect to her.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 4:54 PM edit delete reply
Of course she wouldn't need to! How is that relevant? Having established that there is no good reason for her to be in my bed, it follows that there are only bad reasons for her to be there. (Which is not necessarily the same as 'bad purposes'.)

There is no indication that Noctis did or did not do anything to confirm the guilt of the three family members she executed. We know that Noctis had information that Aurelia was innocent (which may or may not have been erroneous) and that she would be away that night (which was erroneous). She acted as she did when she discovered the error -- which is irrelevant to how she treated the rest of the family.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 5:03 PM edit delete reply

It's relevant, because it does not fit her personality. It isn't something she would do. By what means have you established there was no good reason for her to be there? Have you asked her? We do know that if you directly ask her, she will not lie. Another thought occurs, and that is if she is already in your bed, and her motives are to harm you, you have no chance. She would not allow you to get to any "minimum distance". She is much too fast for that.

She did not verify the guilt of the three, because she was under a direct order. Deviation would have resulted in " correction". Aurelia was not part of that order, and she did what she could to rectify the situation.
Morituri 27th Feb 2017, 5:20 PM edit delete reply
Yes, they all have their own personalities.

If I had found Nox or Malati in my bed, I think I would be properly terrified.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 5:41 PM edit delete reply

I tend to agree Morituri, if for no other reason than I don't know them well enough to make a proper determination. If I could, I would rather make a reasoned decision. Every time I make a hasty one, it bites me in the ass! LOL

In summary, and in conclusion, we have, once again dragged this waaaay off and down the rabbit hole. LOL.
Tokyo Rose 27th Feb 2017, 6:43 PM edit delete reply

If Noctis is in someone's bed, she's probably there to interrogate and/or kill them, since she's not, er, equipped for sexytimes.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 6:49 PM edit delete reply

Yeah, Cent said as much about her equipment. Would it be at all likely for her to resort to that though? I guess it didn't/doesn't seem to me to fit her personality. I thought she'd be more direct.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 6:56 PM edit delete reply
I respectfully disagree, @Tokyo Rose. "Pillow Talk" is an accepted interrogation technique and, if M. Butterfly could manage it, I see no reason to doubt Noctis could contrive something.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 6:59 PM edit delete reply

But you disagreed by agreeing. Rose just said ". . . to interrogate . . ."

So I basically understand her comment to infer that she would not be in someone's bed, unless that's where you are if she comes for you.

Every bit of information Rose gives comes with three more questions :-)
Tokyo Rose 27th Feb 2017, 7:31 PM edit delete reply

Noctis is neither equipped for nor inclined to the induction of post-coital chattiness. :D
megados 27th Feb 2017, 7:52 PM edit delete reply

Well spoken, Rose! I like that. And thank you! :-D
Timotheus 27th Feb 2017, 8:27 PM edit delete reply

I hope you've realized that this would make for a really fun Cassian side story. Person wakes up with a Cassian in bed next to them and we then follow all the panicked thoughts that go through his mind while in the end we see the Cassian thinking "This really IS better than torture."
megados 27th Feb 2017, 9:18 PM edit delete reply

Let me guess. It's called "Candid Cassian" LOL :-D
Tokyo Rose 28th Feb 2017, 2:44 AM edit delete reply

megados 28th Feb 2017, 5:39 AM edit delete reply

*looks over to see her flipping through pictures on her phone, chuckling*

** obviously NOT Noctis . . . ;-)
Morituri 28th Feb 2017, 12:52 AM edit delete reply
If she is there to interrogate me, I will tell her whatever I know. If she's there to kill me, I don't imagine that anything I could possibly do would make me less likely to die. The only question in that case is, clean and quick, or messy and slow? Messy and slow seems like the sort of thing that might happen if you piss her off by trying to run.
antrik 28th Feb 2017, 6:25 AM edit delete reply
From what we know of Noctis, I don't believe your decision to run or not to run would affect the mode of your death.

More importantly though, if she had come to kill you, you would be gone before you'd even realise what's going on. So if you actually have time to wonder why she is in your bed, she clearly has other plans.

At any rate, as we have seen in "Cooperation" (currently ), your behaviour very well *might* be decisive for your continued existence...
antrik 28th Feb 2017, 6:48 AM edit delete reply
Eh, I'm pretty sure she is equipped perfectly fine for *some* forms of sex... Unless you share president Clinton's views on what constitutes intercourse ;-)

I can't say though that I feel inclined to fantasize about such possibilities... Looking at Noctis rather makes me want to stroke her cheek or something. Except I kinda doubt she'd appreciate such a gesture ;-)
megados 28th Feb 2017, 6:59 AM edit delete reply

antrik, my guess would be that she would give you that look she has, absent any hint as to what she is thinking, and wait to see what you do. Your next move might be important.
Sheela 28th Feb 2017, 5:04 PM edit delete reply

If Noctis is in your bed, your bed probably have an induction charger build into it.
antrik 3rd Mar 2017, 12:53 PM edit delete reply
That's... A surprisingly rational scenario. "Don't mind me, just taking a quick field recharge." :-)
Rashala 27th Feb 2017, 12:33 AM edit delete reply

Gonna guess that includes but not limited to mundane, check the mail or now the grass to lesssolike. Kill this annoying rabble rouser and family to weird like teach my heir how to properly have sex or my daughter flushed the launch codes Dow the toilet please enter raw sewage to find it?
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 7:58 AM edit delete reply

Your daughter flushed the launch codes, did she ?
Dammit, you're supposed to leave the launch codes out of reach of children !

You should know this !
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:08 AM edit delete reply

it depended 0n who was in charge and when. >_>

No one speaks of the naked cassian parade dec held in the palace.
sigpig 27th Feb 2017, 9:56 AM edit delete reply

The March of the Barbie Dolls?
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 12:34 PM edit delete reply

Ok, that's a pretty cool name for such a deplorable act.
Tokyo Rose 27th Feb 2017, 6:45 PM edit delete reply

The majority of the Cassians don't have more than surface detail in the groinal regions, and they don't have any nudity taboo. They were annoyed at the break in their assigned routines, that's all.
Rashala 28th Feb 2017, 12:44 AM edit delete reply

So no cassian living chess games?
Tokyo Rose 28th Feb 2017, 2:43 AM edit delete reply

And now I'm having flashbacks to "History of the World". *hysterical laughter*
Sheela 28th Feb 2017, 5:05 PM edit delete reply

More like a dead chess game, if Cassians are involved.
HiFranc 27th Feb 2017, 12:46 AM edit delete reply

I wonder how long Noctis has been wanting to ask Ada that?
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:07 AM edit delete reply

A while now. :D
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 9:39 AM edit delete reply
I missed it. What question did Noctis ask Ada? I can't find a question mark in any of Noctis' word balloons.
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 12:36 PM edit delete reply

Noctis frames her questions as statements.
She was basically asking Ada if Androids were allowed to be human.

Considering how badly the cassians have been treated, better treatment must be something they want pretty badly by now. They want to be humans too.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 12:51 PM edit delete reply
I didn't get that at all, @Sheela. Especially given the levels of intelligence data about New Troy that Noctis has previously demonstrated. Upon re-reading I still don't find that interpretation particularly convincing, but I will take your word for it.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 2:58 PM edit delete reply

A person has to remember that Noctis has very certain ways of wording things at times.
antrik 28th Feb 2017, 7:02 AM edit delete reply
Well, I'm pretty sure the Cassians do not actually want to be humans (especially Nox, who expressly hated humans) -- though I suppose some of them at least might be wishing they'd be treated more like people...

However, I don't think we have seen any real indication of this thus far?
Sheela 28th Feb 2017, 5:07 PM edit delete reply

Ok, maybe "human" is the wrong word .. perhaps "respected" is more fitting ?

And even the best intelligence, you don't get much data on soft stuff like how people treat one another and androids.
The Old Scribe 27th Feb 2017, 1:05 AM edit delete reply

Maybe it's the mods that Dolly, Ada, TeeDee and the rest of the New Troy andy's have, but Noctis appears to be more 'machine like' in her appearance and demeanor. Which makes me wonder if the citizens of Nova Roma want their andy's to be more 'visible'or the Throne wants them to be scary as hell, better to intimidate the rabble. IMO I find Noctis almost as scary as Kali was. They both have (had) all the apparent warmth and compassion of a rattlesnake, which I guess was the point.
Timotheus 27th Feb 2017, 1:15 AM edit delete reply

From the Nova Roma point of view I doubt there was much need seen on wasting RAM on warm and fuzzy personality traits in their android enforcers.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 5:58 AM edit delete reply

Life is different in Nova Roma for an android. If I go by the tech page info, their synth brains would be similar, and have similar capabilities. Remember Malati? She had quite a personality. Noctis' personality is just how Noctis is. (Kudos to Rose for her consistency and development.) Personalities of the androids in Nova Roma can be as varied as anywhere else. One difference in that regard, though, is that the Nova Roman androids all have to have inhibitors by law, and in New Troy, the opposite is true. (if I remember right)

As far as appearance goes, the laws regarding appearance are very different in Nova Roma from their counterparts in New Troy. In New Troy, an android has to retain one distinctive identifier that identifies them as android. In Nova Roma, the distinctiveness is such that there can be no mistake of an android identity. Noctis' appearance is not unlike a porcelain doll. That's how it was described to me, and it fits perfectly.

At least that's how I understand it. :-)
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:07 AM edit delete reply

@ TOScribe that is the point :D
Greenwood Goat 27th Feb 2017, 3:36 AM edit delete reply
Dolly: Assassinations? Eliminations? Wetwork? Threats? "Examples"?

Noctis: We did get other orders... occasionally.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ (wavy transition effect)

Noctis: The Prince's order was "Stay exactly as you are." I know he wouldn't have been able to damage me, and I am incapable of sustaining psychological trauma, and indeed, better me than some poor girl, but I still felt an immense sense of gratitude and relief when General Maxus walked into the room unexpectedly, and then... intervened.

Kali: I didn't think Decimus's... interests lay that way.

Malati: Nothing surprises me about Princeps Effluvium Ejaclulorum any more. We might warn Hrist, though. She's been ordered to play bedtime dressup for him.

Hrist: *paints a large red circle on each cheek and freckles around her nose* *puts on yarn wig with long plaits and frilly cap* *pulls strings of patchwork apron tighter around shapeless patchwork dress, ties in large bow* *picks up large hardback book: "The Complete Mother Goose - Lamod edition"* (storytelling voice) Once upon a time there was a terrible prince who died, and everyone lived happily ever after! *sets off towards Dec's apartments*

Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 8:01 AM edit delete reply

Hey guys, things got kinda weird ovah here!
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 8:06 AM edit delete reply

not all Cassians have the fun park below. actually Noctis resembles a barbi doll below that sleek jumpsuit. it does vary from cassian to cassian.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 9:10 AM edit delete reply

I thought I saw it inferred somewhere that Kali was "outfitted" though.
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 10:08 AM edit delete reply

Another difference for them to possibly discuss. One that doesn't care about human contact and one that relishes it.

Not sure if they have the time though as that could turn into a LENGTHY discussion.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 11:05 AM edit delete reply
@Stormwind13, how are you imagining that conversation going? Because (admittedly I have a poor track record with predictions) every time I try to imagine it, it ends up something like this:

ADA: "So ... (delicate pause) given attitudes in Nova Roma, how do you deal with the need for ... emotional comfort? For example, I like {this} and {this}, and sometimes {this}, if the person is really special."
NOCTIS: "..."
ADA: "... Ok."
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 10:09 AM edit delete reply
I will assert (again, because I feel it bears repeating) that in my opinion the most important 'fun factory' is between the ears, not between the legs. Sadly, when it comes to abuse, this also seems to be true.

The strongest argument I can see for Decimus not having abused Noctis was that he didn't remember her name when she came to report on activities during the Night of Long Knives and get her orders (Comic 1252 - Status Report). He seemed the sort of fellow who, having singled someone out for special attention, would be likely to savor the memory long after the fact.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 10:51 AM edit delete reply

I agree with your assertion, @Gilrandir. **e: It begins there, but then you do what you can with what you have. Creativity . . .

Stormwind13, I fear they'd overshoot New Troy by quite a ways!
Greenwood Goat 27th Feb 2017, 11:48 AM edit delete reply
Maxus: *enters unexpectedly* *recognises situation* *approaches Decimus* Princeps...

Decimus: What is the meaning of this intrus-

Maxus: *leans in* *whispers*

Decimus: *????????!* *!!!!!!!* SHE HASN'T??!! Venus inferna... *retreats from room* Order rescinded, Noctis. Dismissed. :-(

Noctis: Thank you for your intervention, General. I did try to tell him, but...

Ryu Santos 27th Feb 2017, 1:47 PM edit delete reply

@Centcomm Thanks now I have a certain song by Aqua running through my head.
antrik 28th Feb 2017, 7:11 AM edit delete reply
And now I have a vision of Noctis singing that song... Which, I must say, is quite hilarious :-)
megados 28th Feb 2017, 4:00 PM edit delete reply

And that, now, makes me wonder just what she actually sounds like . . .
HeSerpenty 27th Feb 2017, 11:47 AM edit delete reply

It's cool to see the contrast between "New Rome" androids and "New Troy" androids... I think that Noctis and Ada are perfect representations of both haha.

I love seeing them conversing!
Sheela 27th Feb 2017, 12:42 PM edit delete reply

Oh, there's so many I would like to see Noctis have a conversation with !

But TeeDee and Doctor Silver is probably at the top of the list.
But others that could provide a disturbing contrast would be cool too, imagine Noctis' take on Mockingbird ?
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 12:55 PM edit delete reply
"The inhibitor must have been defective to allow the android to violate its design protocols like that? Just random good fortune -- and the fact that it had been left too long in place without proper maintenance -- that things did not turn out much worse." (Or something like that -- just my opinion, of course. ^_^)
Timotheus 27th Feb 2017, 2:49 PM edit delete reply

"Poor, pathetic android. To have its personality elements so tortured and twisted that it would waste so much time and effort in eliminating that waste of carbon. One strike to the base of the skull would have dealt with him."
SeanR 27th Feb 2017, 5:21 PM edit delete reply
Here's my take.
Remember that Kali also said that Rome could burn for all she cared, so long as her failure was avenged.
She decided to end it all. The waste of skin, herself, even the world if that's what it took.
SeanR 28th Feb 2017, 6:07 PM edit delete reply
Considering Dr. Silver's day job, Noctis may be given reason to reevaluate her own prejudices. There may well be opportunity for those two to meet on Dr. Silver's ground.
Considering she was able to speak civilly with Rose, who could probably turn Noctis into a smiling little sockpuppet from the safety of Shinendo, but issued a KOS order on Dr. Silver, on no more evidence than that she was some grade of technopath, she really needs the growth opportunity.
SeanR 27th Feb 2017, 5:44 PM edit delete reply
I noticed that Noctis looked away when saying that last. This is not a thing she likes about her existence.
A very nice detail to add to the story.

Frankly, Androids, (and Gynoids, if you want to differentiate,) are second class citizens in both, and probably all three, cities. I'd argue that their status is similar to that of minorities in our own history at different times. Clearly, Nova Roma would be post-construction South, where lynchings happened. But New Troy isn't all that much better. Possibly closer to the Northeast in the same time frame. Some clubs, businesses, even neighborhoods being off limits, as "whites only".
Consider. It's been established that, even in New Troy, Androids are limited to a finite lifespan, by law. On this page, it's reinforced that Androids can not "pass", by law. Further, Androids are subject to external personality modification via a device for which we have no evidence of a human equivalent. One android that snapped and killed a monster is basically being treated as a potentially rabid animal until she can prove herself sane because the monster, graced with human biology, had more protections than she did. A human in the same circumstance would, presumably, have had a far more sympathetic audience in the court, possibly even approaching TeeDee's gleeful cheering on of the Murderturd's rampage through Nova Roma's ranks.
Then, of course, we have, from that ssame series of strips, ample proof that, at least some humans, even in enlightened New Troy, think of Androids as property to be used, and not as people.

Of course, I say this from a perspective of having never had to live in that dismal world, or even the shadow of it that still haunts us.
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 5:59 PM edit delete reply

wow Sean

That is some intense stuff .. well done.
Gilrandir 27th Feb 2017, 6:24 PM edit delete reply
I agree, @SeanR. Nicely done. When drawing parallels we want to be careful about using too close an identification between DataChasers androids and minority ethnicities in homo sapiens because of one irreproducible difference: the original purpose for the creation of androids is a matter of historical record, not philosophical conjecture. Yet even that leads to one of the really great (IMHO) questions the webcomic, as a whole inspires: Should it matter, when deciding how to treat androids now, that they were originally created as a subordinate race specifically to serve and preserve humanity? Or does the proper treatment of them as beings and a race of beings depend solely on their innate qualities and not on any historical heritage?
Morituri 27th Feb 2017, 11:02 PM edit delete reply
Consciousness is what it feels like to organize approximate and incomplete information in service of planning motivated purposeful action. Goethe claimed that, and I think that he was right.

Sophonce on the other hand is the ability to do so using models represented by symbols. This means a sequence of symbols, much easier to keep exact track of and manipulate than the endlessly exceptional singularities and squishy ambiguities of the world itself - can map (or anyway sketch) the information and the plan.

Sophonce is a corequisite for the use of language as we know it; that is, language emergent as a strategy for getting *other* motivated actions planned and done, not language as a goal in itself.

If some animal species (or some type of robot brain-model) becomes sophont then we have some fundamentally new questions about rights and law.

I'm ready to call any sophont a person, with all that implies. But how does the law treat beings 'equally' when the beings are fundamentally unequal? When they have such different senses, different motives, different levels and kinds of intelligence and other abilities, and different requirements for life? The 'inalienable' rights it's worth guaranteeing to human people are only partially relevant to others.

Ultimately the law will have to treat different kinds of people as different, to the extent that they are actually different. We've had really bad experiences where people were asserting that differences between humans of different ethnic groups, religions, or nationalities are really that important; they're not. But we humans have not so far demonstrated our ability to build societies composed of people with different legal protections and responsibilities without being complete bastards about it.
megados 27th Feb 2017, 6:28 PM edit delete reply

Very well said, SeanR, good corollary!
Stormwind13 27th Feb 2017, 8:26 PM edit delete reply

Wow SeanR. Very well thought out. Thank you for sharing your insights.
antrik 28th Feb 2017, 7:53 AM edit delete reply
Yeah, that's what I thought as well: Noctis is clearly very uneasy about this inquiry. (I say *very* uneasy, since she only shows this much emotion in extreme situations.)

I don't think though it's just the fact that she dislikes that part of her existence in general -- I suspect it's exacerbated here because she realises that Ada wouldn't approve.
StellarJay 27th Feb 2017, 6:34 PM edit delete reply

Noctis *could have* made a joke there, but there's too much room for it not to be. Now if she had said, "'I see!' said the blind man as he picked up a hammer and saw", *that* would be an obvious joke.
The chance of her doing so? Zero.
Tokyo Rose 27th Feb 2017, 7:02 PM edit delete reply

Noctis has a very, very understated sense of humor.
Sheela 28th Feb 2017, 5:13 PM edit delete reply

Which used to be offset by Malati's more obvious and sometimes blunt humor.

Curiously, Malati was probably one of the best at spotting Noctis' humors and moods.
antrik 3rd Mar 2017, 1:22 PM edit delete reply
I'm not so sure of Malati having been good at reading Noctis. When Noctis was hinting during the briefing that they don't actually wish for the assassination plan on Maxus to succeed ("Four of Swords (Reversed)", presently ), Malati seemed kinda slow on the uptake...
KarToon12 27th Feb 2017, 8:28 PM edit delete reply

They need to be visible, or else they have to send Blade Runner after you.
Centcomm 27th Feb 2017, 9:20 PM edit delete reply

Probably true!
rufiangel 27th Feb 2017, 9:42 PM edit delete reply

That view outside is breathtaking, Centy <3

I like that Noctis has her arm around Acantha. I know it's practical, but it gives her a tiny touch of affection, intentional or not. :)
Centcomm 28th Feb 2017, 8:14 AM edit delete reply

smiles thank you Rufi!!! :D
there will me even more cool shots later too!
Gilrandir 28th Feb 2017, 1:33 PM edit delete reply
Are there multiple Daz-3D models for Planet Earth? Can you give them different styles for vegetation and cloud cover? ^_^
All the Pickles 28th Feb 2017, 10:44 AM edit delete reply

How does Noctis know Ada is an android? I reviewed everything that happened since they met and it doesn't seem like anyone mentioned it on camera. Kinda makes one wonder what kind of sensor suite Noctis has if she figured it out on her own...
Stormwind13 28th Feb 2017, 11:32 AM edit delete reply

I think it comes under the heading of enhanced senses, Pickles. Androids have parts that make minute noises. Androids with the right package can detect them.
megados 28th Feb 2017, 1:08 PM edit delete reply

I had thought that androids for the most part, could identify each other. It didn't occur to me that they would have to have enhancements to do so. I could as always, be wrong.
Gilrandir 28th Feb 2017, 1:16 PM edit delete reply
This adds a delightful little extra wrinkle to @DLKmusic's concern about the legal obligation of androids in New Troy to visually broadcast their non-human status. If androids all have a magic extra-sensory perception that allows them to infallibly distinguish between disguised androids (pre-series 5) and actual humans, does that affect the ethics of humans being given an equal chance under the law? In other words, it is ethically proper to require androids to make a "reasonable accommodation" to allow the 'differently abled' humans the same capability that androids enjoy by virtue of natural ability, or should we start doing away with handicapped ramps and special-access parking places? ^_^

Perhaps we should, instead, legislate that androids may not be designed with internal sensors and abilities which exceed those available to humans, and must rely on external technology or implants to extend their capabilities the way humans must? ^_^
megados 28th Feb 2017, 1:48 PM edit delete reply

If it is something that androids in general can do, it does pose an advantage. My impression (which could be wrong) wouldn't rely on androids being designed with those kinds of extra sensors, but a sensing of natural emissions related to an android's physiology. You couldn't necessarily "design it out", if that's the case. I want to stress that this is pure guesswork.
FrankZ 28th Feb 2017, 12:56 PM edit delete reply
Besides - and this has been mentioned before - carrying Acantha for quite a distance without even the smallest sign of fatigue was probably a good hint...
All the Pickles 28th Feb 2017, 3:22 PM edit delete reply

@megados: Back in the Mockingbird era there was mention that even basic NT androids have skeletal and muscular systems that let them bench press half a ton. That seems like a pretty significant designed advantage.
@FrankZ: That is a good point, but I'm sure augmented humans like Marcus could do that too. She's also wearing that bulky suit that looks like it might be able to augment the wearer's strength.
megados 28th Feb 2017, 4:10 PM edit delete reply

@All the Pickles, that is a big advantage, yes, as are speed, mental capability, eyesight, and a host of others. I suppose I was unclear. I was mostly speaking to what may be an advantage in that androids can recognize other androids while humans cannot without the distinctions that androids are encumbered with to allow humans to do so. It was my thought that this ability was inherent in their physiology, rather than something that required a special sensor suite. Some subtle visual cues, some emissions that can be sensed, a combination of things? I wanted to make known that I am not aware of which is true.
Sheela 28th Feb 2017, 5:16 PM edit delete reply

Don't forget that Nox was counting Decimus' heartbeats.

So we can assume that if they meet someone WITHOUT a heartbeat, that it's likely an android.
antrik 3rd Mar 2017, 1:39 PM edit delete reply
@megados regarding advantages of androids in this universe, I don't believe "mental capability" is among them. While Androids have many bonuses (and few downsides), their mental capability is consistently shown to be pretty much the same as humans'.
SeanR 28th Feb 2017, 5:50 PM edit delete reply
Have you ever seen a human sit really still? It's unnatural. Humans twitch. Human eyes even twitch from interest point to interest point, only tracking smoothly if their subject is tracking smoothly.
Humans breathe. Nearly constantly.
Humans react SLOWLY. I can't emphasize this enough. My understanding is, it takes a human roughly a second to notice a change that they're waiting for but not primed for, such a a green light, and then taking the appropriate action based on that. This doesn't include reflex actions.
This body of off-reactions. Potentially not breathing except to talk, (although Ada probably has enough biological components that breathing is pretty constant). Eyes tracking too smoothly. Sitting perfectly still except when they choose to move. And reactions that are, to be blunt, superhuman, would all add up to the image of an android. An extensively cybered individual, such as Marcus, might well have some of these, such as very fast reaction speed, but not all of them.

One more. Babies smell differently than do adolescents, adults, or the elderly.
Outside of THIS fiction, but in the related body of it, we're told that androids, in general, don't smell like adults. IN this fiction, we have the Trans-human Dusty pointing out that Dolly looks like an adult, but smells like a baby.
Gilrandir 28th Feb 2017, 5:58 PM edit delete reply
Without disagreeing with anything you have said, @SeanR, there are physical and chemical reasons for all of the behaviors you describe, rooted in the things that give humans their abilities and capabilities. If the androids possess abilities and capabilities that exceed those of humans, what makes them exempt from the ramifications of those same physical and chemical laws?
megados 28th Feb 2017, 6:00 PM edit delete reply

@SeanR, that is some good reasoning. It would tend to solidify my belief that androids would not need any better sensing capability than just good ol' observation. It would possibly also suggest that if humans practiced a bit better observation practices, they could also be better capable at differentiating.
Tokyo Rose 28th Feb 2017, 6:06 PM edit delete reply


Gold star.

I've tried really hard not to mention the HBO series "Westworld", because I don't know how many of the readers have seen it (if I had my way, ALL OF THEM. ALL OF EVERYONE, EVER, THAT SERIES IS AMAZING). The creators applied a very subtle, but extremely effective use of CG that greatly enhances certain scenes with the android "hosts". There are points where the hosts' motor functions are frozen. While some of it was pure physical acting, for which the actors deserve due credit, CG was used to make them look as though they are perfectly still. Not a twitch, not a tremor, not a flicker of movement. In many of those scenes, the camera tends to linger on a close-up just long enough for the difference to become clear, as it's often subtle enough that it might not otherwise have been noticed. It's a small thing, but it roars right down into the Uncanny Valley in an incredibly effective way.
Tokyo Rose 28th Feb 2017, 6:04 PM edit delete reply

Teedee and Ada are only barely disguised as human. To catch on, the average human would have to apply the same degree of scrutiny as would be used to, say, notice that someone has a few distinctive and identifiable, but not overly obvious, moles or scars on their face. It doesn't take super-senses, just attentiveness and knowledge of what's being seen and heard. All that Teedee and Ada really had to do was refrain from talking too much and consciously alter their body language a little. Someone using the Mark One Eyeball and Eardrum would need to pay attention to notice they're not quite right, but they were only meant to "pass" long enough to get through the customs check and enter the city.

(They'd have pulled it off under normal circumstances, but the murderturd's rampage pretty much ensured that nobody was going to take a closer look at the two of them. The gene-priest that Teedee and Black talked to was adequately distracted by Teedee's entertaining story--with pictures, even!--that he didn't notice.)

Teedee and Ada are using the "human speech" font, as they're using certain filters in their vocal units to make their voices pass for human in casual inspection, but they've retained colored speech balloons to signify the too-perfect diction that goes with the use of a vocal unit. Dolly's "human" speech and bubble indicate that she even sounds human. Noctis, who's much more alert than most as well as having enhanced senses, has noticed that fact, but she isn't particularly curious about it... she has much bigger things to worry about than the seeming fact that the Taylors could afford some REALLY good camouflage for their guardian.
All the Pickles 28th Feb 2017, 6:23 PM edit delete reply

So was Teedee's diction less perfect in #1457 or was that a coloring mistake?
Tokyo Rose 28th Feb 2017, 6:24 PM edit delete reply

That was a mistake. I'm going back now and fixing it. (A similar mistake was caught before, but I didn't catch this one. Derp.)
Sheela 2nd Mar 2017, 2:48 PM edit delete reply

Frankly, if the Taylors Guardian didn't have top-of-the-line, well .. everything !
That could possibly have tipped off Noctis even more.

She expects her opponents to be very capable and spare no effort.
Post a Comment

Comic Basement - Webcomic Ranking Directory