Typewriter texts in xkcd

In the XKCD comic, House of Pancakes, there is a clear concept of trying to mimic House of Leaves. Portions of the text read similarly to an everyday restaurant menu, further portions of the text appear as typewriter font below the menu items, and also there are additional comments strewn throughout the comic. Choosing to examine the typewriter texts, one encounters numerous oddities about it.

First, above the menu, the typewriter character compares an abundance of IHOP’s to a personal hell. Why might he be so opposed to IHOP’s?  He says he has stolen menus in his back seat, but it is doubtful that a chain the size of IHOP might go after a few menus. Granted, the increasing number of IHOP’s (just like the increasing number of McDonalds and Starbucks) could represent the takeover of capitalism. Maybe the character is disgusted at that thought, opposing capitalism in the form of an IHOP or 50.

The top left menu choice is accompanied by the typewriter-man’s incessant fear of nothing. He is afraid, as he willingly admits, but he doesn’t seem to know what he’s afraid of. Maybe it is the guy stealing the ketchup? Can’t live a minute without that red tomato-y goodness?

Top right, he is having nightmares, presumably about ketchup-man. He also seems to be sweating syrup. Interesting stylistic choice, but wouldn’t that get quite sticky in the morning? He’d have to change sheets every night at least.

Middle left, and typewriter-man is correcting the menu writer’s grammatical choice not to hyphenate kids only (or kids-only) while further speculating as to his nationality and sleeping patterns. The writer also left a comma out where there should have been one, after link. This was also pointed out by typewriter-man. He is so fearful of who knows what, yet has time to point out grammatical errors in a menu?

Middle right below a horizontal menu listing instead of vertical. Typewriter-man has boldly gone where only thousands (millions?) have gone before: ordering said menu item. He bled onto the floor, or maybe ketchup-man squirted ketchup to make it look like blood.Is it an important stylistic choice that typewriter-man says he ordered the menu item in Rochester, NY, or is it just random selection of place?

Bottom left, a storage unit full of pancakes. One supersize order of the strawberries and whipped cream, for delivery, 3527 Freeport st. Yes, I know that’s a storage facility. My code to get in is 8585. Pull around storage row C and you should see me.

Bottom right- in Vegas. Important contextually because the star trek experience is closing, and Vegas is where that is. IHOP with list of states, none sounded like home? I guess typewriter-man is Canadian or something.


~ by diamondace on April 16, 2010.

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