F Since we assume you don't know us yet...
D Allow us to introduce ourselves.
F I'm Fred.
D I'm Derek.
FD How do you do?
F We've been colouring the life of our creator for over a year now...
D So we thought we'd step out. Bonnz picked us to host her 100 Theme Challenge.
F Wait Derek, does that mean we have to perform 100 jokes? (beat)
D I guess so...
F We were picked because we're cute...
F Filled with potential...
D And of course...
FD We're easy to draw! (both laugh) (a pencil with eraser comes in to erase F and D)
F Hey... Is she trying to erase us?
F You can't, silly!
D We're drawn in biro!
F So, are you ready?
D What for?
F 100 gags silly! (beat)
D Gee, I'll never be ready for that.
F Me either.
F Say Derek...
F I think I'm in love. (beat)
D Really? With whom? (beat)
F What do you mean?
D Who are you in love with?
F Wait a minute... (beat) You have to be in love with someone?
D That's the point, isn't it?
F I don't get it...
D Oh help... how do we fill this void in your education?
F Nonono I know all that... But can't you just be in love with everything? The flowers, the kittens, the llamas... wax paper... rubber ducks... screwdrivers...
D OK OK I get your point... It's hardly a relationship, is it?
F It beats it.
D You know, you might be onto something here.
D Either that, or you're just being silly again.
F What is it, Derek?
D My eyes hurt!
F Hey, mine too!
D What do you think causes it?
F It must be all the light up here.
D Right! But we can't shut it off!
F No need... It'll get dark once the reader turns over the page.
F Sure! (beat) Well, what are you waiting for!
FD Turn the page already!
F Unless you can think of a good gag before the page is full.
D Oh dear I won't make it... Wait I got one...
F Too late.
4 Dark (written in black ink instead of biro blue)
D Say it did get nice and dark out here!
F Sure! Your turning the page worked a treat!
FD Thank you, reader! (beat)
D It's so romantic out here now...
F Don't you get any ideas. (both laugh) (beat)
D But seriously... It's calm out here.
F Yes. (beat) (beat) So... Done anything interesting lately?
D I don't think so, no.
F Gee... (beat)
D Shall we put the light back on?
D What's up, Fred?
F Something's rotting in here!
D Poor Fred! Why don't you join me here.
F Say the air is a lot fresher at your side... How absurd! What could be rotting in here?
D One of your jokes, perhaps? (beat)
F That wasn't very funny, Derek.
D It must be one of my jokes, then. (both laugh) Perhaps you ate chili. Or it could be a dead mouse.
D And what is it?
F One of your jokes.
D No really, what was it?
F Remember last week? When I lost my cat?
F Phew! All this joking around is tiring!
D And we have so many more topics to go...
F Forget it! I'm taking a break this time round.
D Fred? Come back!... I guess it's time for Stand-Up Derek! Thank you, thank you! So, how many people here follow politics? (beat) I mean, it's great to know that I'm not the world's greatest loser... but why are all the bigger losers in government? (beat) Anyone still use VCR out here? I do! ... Fred, you're back!
F Yeah, you should try a break too. The coffee here's great!
F ...Derek? Derek? Where are you? You can't leave me here like this?
D Ah, this is life! Hanging out with my best friend... On the world's greatest stage... Making silly jokes...
F You're such an actor.
D Why thank you! Am I sean Connery, classy and sexy? Am I Tim Curry, distinguished and dark? Or am I Michael York, tragic and dapper?
F You're Danny Devito. (both laugh)
D Seriously my legwork could pass for Gene Kelly's... (sings) "I'm singin' in the rain..."
F You? Singing in the rain? You even yell "AAGH! I'm wet!" when you're in the shower!
D Ah, as a joke. (beat)
F But life's great here, indeed. We've got a home, a stage and someone to love.
D (sings) "I know this ain't heaven, it's close enough for me..."
F Ooh, Tim Curry! Classy!
F Say Derek...
F I've been thinking... I'd love to go on a vacacion.
F I'd really love to go hiking someday.
D Wouldn't that take forever? I mean, if you leave now, by next month you'll have made it to the other end of the table! (beat)
F Yeah, that's a pickle.
D You could travel by dog.
F No! Too dangerous, too noisy, too smelly and still too slow!
D Oh my... Well if you want a change of scenery, I could ask our creator to put on a new shirt.
F Could you to that for us, Bon? Something clean for a change. (Both laugh, then a panel with interference)
F Oh dear...
D Uh oh...
F She didn't like that.
D No. How about something colourful?
FD With lots of cleavage!
D What is it?
F It's an exclamation one outs when one's in pain. (beat)
D You've been watching Airplane again, haven't you?
F Sorry. No, I had a paper cut.
D That's clever! Here we are at the middle of the page, and you get a paper cut.
F Yes well... It happened when the reader turned the page.
D OK, dear reader... Please only read us in moderate light...Turn the pages gently...
F And wear something with cleavage! You think they can remember all that?
D Sure... If they got enough concentration to be reading this still, they can remember these three things too.
F Two? (beat)
D So, how's your paper cut?
F In rectangles, usually. (laughs) I was hoping you could kiss it better.
D Uhm... I have no lips...
F Ah, smell that fresh biro-ink air... The start of a new day... A clean page... And a new comic! (beat) Derek? You're quiet all of a sudden.
D I'm saving my breath.
D I feel the mother of all jokes coming up... Wouldn't want to run out of air while telling it.
F Does that mean I have to do all the jokes for now?
D I'd prefer it.
F Did you hear about the guy who went to Paris? He didn't go!
D OK I'll talk. Geez. Where do you get your jokes from, anyway?
F I pick them up along the way. That's what fleas do.
D Next time you pick a host, try to get on Bill Cosby, OK?
F Say Derek, can I ask you something?
F Why do I keep forgetting things? (beat) Well?
D I never guaranteed an answer.
F Quit fooling around!
D Sorry. What was the question? (beat)
F Err... Oh right! Why do I always forget stuff?
D Good question. Some would say you had a bad childhood. Some blame it on a low on the head. Perhaps drug or alcohol abuse.
D Me, I think you're just silly.
D Sorry. But you got to admit you turn forgetfulness into art. (beat)
F Was that a compliment?
D Better take it that way.
F What way?
D A brillig biro dances on the page / white to blue and blue to sage...
F What are you doing?
D Just writing some absurd poetry. The weirder the better.
F Gee Derek... I'm at a loss for words!
D Try it! Pick a random adjective...
D A random noun...
D Put them together and you got instant poetry!
F Crisp sludge?
D well, you got to start somewhere... (in awkward layout) Crackling tape shyly twists...
F What's with the lay-out?
D I'm an Ostaijen fan. True twisting tape tries two tiny trances...
F What's that then?
D Just trying to make it fit into the panel. T'were triangles, tittering, tweeting torches, tatting to trees, tiny touching...
F You're insane.
D Fred? I'm getting tired.
F That's unfortunate... We still have a lot of gags to go!
D How many?
F This is topic 13, cue black cat, we need 87 more comics after this.
F Well, it could be worse... At east we're together, having fun... (beat)
D I feel like dancing. (beat)
F We'd better wait 'til the next number...
D I didn't know you were superstitious!
F I mean the next song. All this 4'33" is hard to dance to. Say, couldn't you do that Bon? Whip us up a nice choreography?
D It'll be for another comic though... we're out of space.
F How unfortunate.
F Are you ready for our next bit?
D The Fred And Derek Musical?
Step on up with your chintzi's baby!
Wipe your lips and grin!
Set your heart out to your mitzies baby!
Tune up, let the sun right in! and
Smile! The greatest gift of all!
Smile! The purest gift of all!
It's free, it's easy, it's welcome, it's awesome!
Smile! To all your friends and foes!
Smile! A grin from head to toes!
Let your friends know you love 'em
Your foes that you hate 'em
F Whew, that was fun!
D Sure was tiring though...
F Shall we do it again! (Beat)
D Not in a million years!
F Say Derek, we're supposed to entertain.
D I'm enjoying the silence. Bit it's hard to do that if you keep talking through it!
F This is embarrassing.
D A little quiet is good for us. I mean, I still got that Smile song in my head.
F Me, too.
F Fun song though.
D I hate it.
F You can't stay quiet like this! All those people reading this, think of them! We need to be funny for them! (beat) Well?
D In the next comic.
F Grrpf! Ptui!
D That's no way to behave while you're eating!
F Sorry, this is gross!
D You've been eating at McDonalds again?
F Hey, it's not easy being a parasite! Begh, this host...
D So, what was it anyway?
F Hey, I can't be picky! These are tough times, you know.
D I know.
F So, what are you eating?
D Old skin cells.
F Eww. Ever considered a change of diet?
D Sure... But skin cells "light" are worse! (Both laugh) No, I used to hang out at the office next door, but on Mondays I just couldn't get out of bed! (both laugh) How about you?
F You kiddin'? I love being a vampire! I vant to zuck yur blud...
D Haha... you're kidding, right?
F Ah, blood. Source of proteine, red and succulent...
D You're freaking me out, Fred.
F Sorry. Blood brings out the poet in me.
D You eat poets now? (both laugh)
F Seriously, I love being a flea.
F What for? AAAH! (climbs panel wall)
D Get down, Fred!
F I'm scared of heights!
D Geez... Let yourself fall and I'll catch you.
F No way! You're nuts!
D Hey! ... I'll leave you hanging there... you'll come down anyhow. (walks off)
F Derek! Don't leave me here! Come BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACK!
F Oh how mean of him! Can you help me reader? Just turn the page upside down for me, will you? Please?
(continues upside-down at the bottom of the page, Fred slides down gently)
F Ah, much better! Thank you very much!
D (Comes back and is now stuck up high) Hey what happened here?
F We turned the panels upside-down.
D How am I going to get there now?
F Drop and I'll catch you.
D Okay, sorry... but how will I get down?
F Perhaps the reader can help us again... Could you shake this book back and forth?
F What's that I see, Derek? You're getting grey! (beat)
D I'M NOT GETTING GREY! I'M SUMMER BLONDE!
F Aw, come on, you don't believe that do you? I mean, summer blonde? With the grey summers we have out here?
D They're not grey. The sun just doesn't always feel like shining.
F You're going to have to face it someday...
D I'm not getting grey, and you're being mean.
F Just pointing out the facts, hon. You could dye it, you know.
D Good idea! (walks off)
F Derek! Great, now I'm alone again! At least now I can have a good talk with you, dear reader. (beat) I mean, what's the good of all this! Trees have died for this paper... our jokes come with cane and false teeth... What purpose do we serve?
(Derek returns, all red)
Derek? What happened?
D Little dyeing mishap.
D AAAGH! I can't take it anymore! All these STUPID jokes... So many left to do... And what idiot is going to read this anyway?!
F Stay calm, Derek. I know it's tough, but we have to be strong. We make our author very happy, and you know she could use some happiness... We help her to get rid of excess drawing tools... we'll teach her how to bookbind... And our readers are not idiots. (beat) They just have too much time on their hands. (both laugh)
D Thanks Fred, I feel a lot better.
F Good! How about you take a rest and I'll make the jokes?
D I could use some rest, but listening to your jokes, that's not worth it.
D What are you doing, Fred?
F Just a little folly... I love making pointless things.
D Like your jokes? (laughs)
F I've knitted record covers, made melonsculptures, made a full-length life-size embroidery of Lady Di, cut roses from tomatoes, learnt all verses of the British anthem, learnt to write cursive, designed a sarcasm font, walked a distance I could easily drive, ate a bag of crisps on my own, watched Rocky Horror six hundred times, know all the words to Yakko's Nations Of The World song, read a book while the film version was better...
D Does that exist?
F Read and written fanfic, sat through movies I hated...
D That's all prety pointless, Fred.
F I know.
D Like war.
F Amen. But if it's all the same to you, I'll go do the Time Warp again.
F So, what's the mother of all jokes you were working on?
D I'm still working on it. What's the difference between heaven and hell?
F In heaven, the Germans are the bureaucrats, the English are the police and the French are the cooks. In hell, the French are the bureaucrats, the Germans are the police, and the English are the cooks. I knew it.
D I gathered yeah. I'm making a nice twist on it! When I was born, I was taught to have the grace of a giraffe, the spirit of the donkey, the wit of the cat, the unsuspected lethality of the hippo, and the persistence of a flea.
F Thank you!
D I got confused and came home with: the unsuspected lethality of a giraffe, the wit of a donkey, the spirit of a cat, the grace of a hippo...
F And you're stuck at the flea? Yes, it does need some tinkering! Can I help you with the flea bit?
D No need to bite me! (both laugh)
F Perhaps you could add "brevity" somewhere... I forgot the joke already!
F Say Derek...
F I was wondering... that joke you just made about heaven and hell... could you say something like that?
D You did, didn't you?
F But... Isn't it distasteful?
D Oh Fred... it's never distasteful whe it's about cooking! (both laugh) But I see your point, it's a delicate balance. Could it be "too soon" after a disaster? Could it be too offensive? But most importantly: IS IT FUNNY? You can get away with anything but genocide if you can make people laugh!
So, I wouldn't try it if I were you. (laughs)
F But thank heavens I'm not you!
D Good comeback, but a little too late. Try to do it in the same panel.
F Like this?
D Well, we could have entire sketches in one panel, but it might just get a wee little bit too crowded.
F I see what you mean.
D Hey Fred... Is there anything you want out of life? (beat)
D Besides eating?
F Is there anything better? I've got my friend, my creator, my humour, unlimited reruns of Are You Being Served... All I want. Why?
D Getting to know you... Is there really nothing you wish for? Candlelight dinner with Scarlet Johanssen? A signed copy of Wuthering Heights?
D A part in a movie? Climb the Borobudur? What am I supposed to give you for your birthday?
F Blood pudding. How about you? What's your wish? Outwit Mitt Romney? Travel to the moon?
D What could you wish for if you live a life like ours?
F You know, Derek...
D What do I know?
F Not much. (both laugh) I always wanted to be a spy.
D I'm at a loss for words. What gave you that idea?
F Well... You know how much you could learn as a spy-flea...
D Like the blood-type of a villain! Useful... you could make sure that when they get injured, the hospital won't have his blood-type available! (laughs)
F Well you know how villains plot... And you know every villain has a cat...
D Oh oh... Perhaps I could live in a villain's bed. In case he talks in his sleep.
F You mocking me?
D Of course!
D Say Fred, how do you feel about the European Union?
F What about it?
D Do you think Europe will survive the crisis? Or will Europe fall apart?
F That's not going to happen. They're all firmly attached.
D You lost me.
F Well, it's a continent...
D Oh boy.
F Did you know... The Meditteranean Sea will disappear in a few thousand years.
F Really! The African continent travels north. In a few thousand years the Acropolis will be in the continent.
D Gee... And there I was thinking you couldn't learn anything from comics!
F Here ends Fred's lesson!
D Aww, tell me more!
F Can't, out of space.
F Hey Derek, have you ever eaten foreign food?
D I don't ask my victims for their passport.
D And you? Are you picky?
F It may be true that Macedonians usually have a negative blood type, and that people from malaria countries usually have mild anemia...
F You wanted to learn more, didn't you?
D Oh yeah!
F But really... To me, all blood tastes the same. Like blood. (both laugh) Hey Derek, you laughed at one of my jokes!
D Aw Fred... you're looking down today.
F I'm tired. All these jokes I have to make... And you keep telling me they're bad!
D Aw Fred... Your jokes are like mine! So no need to worry, your jokes are OK!
F Aw thanks, Derek.
D I'm not in the mood for joking either.
F Well, we could do another musical.
D NO! It's not that bad, really...
F Aw come on! You're a great singer, and you got great legs!
D Thanks... although that last remark makes me slightly nervous.
F Well, I could start joking... It's brown and sticky.
D A stick.
F It's feathered, has a beak and wings, lives in a field, crows and has a comb. And 4 legs. What is it?
D I don't know.
F A rooster!
D With 4 legs?!
F I added two legs to make it more difficult.
F Hey Derek, you've lived in the city all your life, haven't you?
D I have... I'm restricted to beds and carpets. I love it though. All those large buildings make me feel quite small.
F You are small.
D True... The light, the traffic... In the city you're never bored. Especially if there's a new Tarantino in cinema. And you?
F I spent some time on a farm. Ate a lot of cows!
D (laughs) (laughs louder) Moo. (laughs) (Laughs some more) Where's the beef? (Laughs) (Still laughs)
F You can stop now, it's getting ugly.
D Aw come on! COWS! (both laugh)
(I sneakily changed the subject to water since I'd already made a rain comic with F&D.)
F Hey Derek... You familiar with that thought? "Water is only wet on the outside"?
D Well... Whoever said that, I bet he doesn't live in The Netherlands! (both laugh)
F It's a cool thought though...
D A WET thought too! Basically what that thought does... Wetness is relative... Because the thought causes that water can never be felt from the inside, since the inside turns into outside when you swim in it or something, water has no inside you can feel, and so you can't say whether the inside is wet or not. Wetness is relative and can only be detected by humans. A computer sensor may detect presence of a fluid, but not whether it's wet or not. Although you can wonder whether there's a wet or dry fluid since a fluid may theoretically already be wet by definition. So the thought might be invalide, since "inside" of water may not be definable, since wetness is relative, and even if it wasn't, it's irrelevant. What's that smell?
F My brain burns.
F I wish I was a bee sometimes, going from flower to flower...
D What on earth for?
F I love flowers. They're pretty, they smell nice...
D You could learn something from them. (laughs) Dear Fred... It's always tough when you realize you're not who you want to be... that you're not pretty, or the greatest comedian in the world...
D But that's stuff you have to live with. You can't be in mourning all your life... Make the best of it using what you have!
F But don't you have a secret longing? Wouldn't you rather be a cat, for example?
D And get fed on by you? No thanks. I do wish I was a maggot.
D I'd go to the bakery and bury myself in whipped cream cake!
F I'll never have another one.
D Heh heh.
F Are you a day person or a night owl?
D I'm not an owl. (both laugh) I love the night.
D That's when people are in bed and I get the most food! And you, Fred?
F I'm more of a day person, although I'm no person either. (laughs)
D That's MY joke!
I love everything about the night... Quietness, serenity, food... the moon, the stars... midnight radio...
F Night always scared me. If you're on a host who's dreaming and sleepwalking... I once nearly got killed when a dog scratched itself. So usually I stick to cats.
D Ew. And then you sit all day in CAT SPIT.
F True... But kitties are cute!
D Don't they wonder off at night?
F Oh yeah! I've woken up on the other side of town several times... And it's so cold if they go out at night... I should stay in bed, like you.
F Oh, the wrath of people! Day in, day out, I fight scratching, chemicals, flea collars... It's not easy being a flea.
D When you're a dustmite, people can get allergic to you and then they buy synthetic bedclothes. And then I can't eat their skin cells.
FD Woe is us!
F And do we ask for much?
F A little blood...
D A few skin cells...
FD Stuff humans have plenty of!
F And if we try to get some, we get killed!
D Capital punishment!
F Perhaps it's time for: SUPERFLEA! (flies around wearing a red cape)
D (sings Superflea theme)
F Superflea fights for the rights of fleas around the world! All humans should fear... THE WRATH OF SUPERFLEA!
D (sings Superflea theme)
D Are you quite finished? It's a bit silly... but you sure look good in that cape!
D Oh Moon, dear Moon...
F What moon are you talking about? The Moon sect? Better stay away from there! Moon Zappa? I think she's already married. The 2009 film?
D No... The silver goddess, shining above us, over us...
F Derek... The moon doesn't shine. It reflects.
D That's a dream lost...
F Did you know... The moon is moving away from us at a rate of 50 cm per year? That's the rate at which fingernails grow.
D No! Moon! Come back!
F There's no man in the moon. Most cultures have a "man in the moon" belief, not surprising since most people can see the moon, and it's very human to "see" faces in random stains or patterns. The moon is 4.6 billion years old... is slightly radio-active... On the sunny side, the temperature is 120 degrees Celsius. On the dark side, it's -110 degrees Celsius.
D Cancel my trip there, then.
D All this sitting around makes me stiff. I'm going for a walk!
D Don't worry, I won't go far. We can still talk if I yell loud enough. LOUD ENOUGH!
F And that says something of my jokes...
D I heard that!
F DEREK, WHILE YOU'RE OUT THERE... COULD YOU GET ME SOME COFFEE!
D COME AND GET IT YOURSELF!
F BUT I CAN'T LEAVE THE AUDIENCE ALONE!
D DON'T WORRY, THEY WON'T KNOW THE DIFFERENCE! (Fred walks over)
F WOW! DON'T YOU WISH YOU COULD SEE ALL THE COOL STUFF OUT HERE? OR TASTE THIS FANTASTIC COFFEE? SAY IT'S NICE AND COSY OUT HERE!
D AND LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL ARTWORK!
F A FOOSBALL TABLE! AIRHOCKEY! WE HAVE THE GREATEST CANTEEN EVER!
D TIME TO GO BACK! (they return)
F Hey Derek? My throat hurts!
D We have so many precious memories...
F Like our musical?
D Not that... But remember our philosophy of rain?
F Your hair dyeing mishap.
D That wasn't funny.
F It was to me!
D The time we went out for coffee... the time we played hide and seek...
F Oh yeah! You only liked that because you won!
D Heh, heh.
F Ah, those were the days...
D And we have many more of those moments to come! It's small things in life that make it worth living.
F Small things... like us! (both laugh)
D And there's another precious memory! We whip them up by the score!
F Did you know a "score" is 20?
D Oh! Another golden Fred Teaching Moment!
F I'm precious.
D Do you know that film?
F What film?
D Precious? It's about a girl called Precious...
D Who's FAT.
F Don't offend fat people!
D So when you say "I'm Precious..." (laughs)
F Don't mock fat people! You know our maker is...
D What's your favourite sight, Fred?
F What do you mean?
D What do you like to look at?
F Flowers, kittens... Musicals...
F Why don't you like musicals?
D I used to be in the bed of an ill child...
F Poor kid.
D And in one week I had to endure some 70 views of 'Annie'.
F Poor Derek! But don't you love a good choreography?
D Not to the tune of "It's a Hart Knock's Life'.
F Poor Derek! Such things can be so traumatizing...
D Like the time you found a worm inside someone you were about to feed on?
F Stop it, stop it!
D What else do you love to look at?
F Blood... Precious blood... Films on Dracula... A nice slasher film from time to time... Rembrandt's Anatomical Lesson...
D I'm sensing a bit of a theme here.
F What about you? What do you like to see?
D Woman's cleavage.
F Derek? Where are you? Derek's left me! What can I do here all by myself... (sings) I'm all alone... I'm all alone...
Oh dear... I forgot the rest of the words. Well, dear readers...
(beat) What would you like to hear? I could do a rendition of 'Cats'... Or tell you a joke...
This local newspaper held a contest for the author of the best pun. My neighbour had sent in 10 entries. He was hoping he'd win something, but no pun in ten did. (laughs)
(beat) Or some more random facts... The dot on an I is called a tittle... Three dots is called an ellipsis, I use that one a lot...
Derek, where art thou? (Derek returns) Derek!
D Had to go to the can, sorry.
D I had such a dream last night, Fred...
F What was it?
D Well... There was this big purple sea... I was sitting on the back of a dog that was swimming across.
F Why would you sit on the back of a dog? You're a dustmite!
D But that's not all; we stranded on an island that turned into a huge silver pig... that blew hard, and I flew...
D Not nude, why?
F When I dream I'm flying I always happen to be nude. (beat)
D But you ARE always nude, Fred.
F Oh yeah.
D Anyway... I was wearing a green cape...
F Oh! Must be a leftover prop from Superflea.
D ... And when I landed I got stuck in this gooey mud... like cotton candy.
F I hate cotton candy.
D Me too. What do you think it means?
F You just eat too many skin cells in your sleep.
40 4:29 PM
D Let's see... It's exactly 4:29 PM.
F How do you know?
D I bought a new Switch watch. Isn't it cool!
F Wow Derek... I didn't know they made those in our size!
D Cool huh! Now I always know what time it is!
F But Derek... What on earth would you do with that kind of information? We're timeless!
D Uhhhhh... Oh dear...
F Was it expensive?
D No, I just had to drop the brand name. Which I did already.
F But why did you get one?
D It's cool!
D Besides... I can tell it took Bon 7 minutes to make this comic.
41 Citric Acid
D Fred? Hey Fred! Why don't you come out here where we can see you?
F (off panel) I'll never set foot out there again!
D Come on Fred... It's not that bad!
F What's the point? There's no use in living if I can't be beautiful.
D Fred? You've been watching Howl's Moving Castle again?
D Fred! Be a man and step out!
F I'm no man.
D Stop being such a baby!
F I'm no baby, either.
D If you have the guts to make jokes like that, surely you can come out!
F No. It's too horrible what they did to me...
F Those humans... It's the latest in flea extermination... (comes in, all yellow) Citric acid...
D Don't worry Fred... Don't fret! (laughs) I still have some hair dye left over. But you'll have to promise me to stop making jokes about that mishap, OK?
D Back in a sec!
F But Derek... won't my hair go red too?
D (off panel) No, don't worry, it'll work this time!
F You see, reader, what can come of wasting citric acid... You see what happened. It's been very hard on me. So take care!
D I'm back, now hold still... Keep still... Still keep still... Now wash it off!
D The excitement! Will it work? ... Yay, the colour is allright, Fred! (Fred comes in, hair standing out wildly) But did you look at yourself in the mirror?
F Hey Derek...
F It's been a long time since we last played a game together..
D What would you like to play?
D There's only two of us.
D There's only two of us.
D I never could work out how that goes.
D We only have one die.
F Strip Liar's Dice?
D We only have one die and no clothes.
F We could roll for the highest...
D Sure. Let's see, I roll...
F Six! Baah! Did you know... Back in the Middle Ages gambling was illegal in The Netherlans. Back then, they'd make tiny dice from animal bone. They were so tiny they could be swallowed. So when the town guard would come along, you could eat the evidence. They'd sometimes find huge amounts of them in bear pits.
D Must be hard to swallow, such an addiction.
F Nice fact, huh!
44 Two Roads
D That dice thing was a neat fact, Fred. How come you know so much?
F Well... There comes a point in the life of every flea, where he has to choose between two paths.
D Uh huh.
F When I reached that point I could choose between university and work. I then got to live with some students. The thought of the beer stench alone still makes me sick. I tried to get a decent job after that... But all I did was "hop" between jobs. (they laugh) And you?
D My crossroads of life was when I faced the choice: Do I stay in bed or shall I get out?
F Gee Derek, I bet a lot of humans have that problem daily! (they laugh)
D I decided to rummage round... And it's a lot of fun!
D You should hear what people talk about in bed, hee hee...
45 Two Guns
F Dear reader...
D We have an important message...
F From our creator, Bonnz.
FD Are you ready?
D The next topic in the challenge...
F Is "Two Guns"!.
D It's our duty to point out...
F That our creator...
D Refuses to work on this topic...
F In view of her pacifist beliefs.
D It is Bonnz's opinion...
F That guns are made to kill...
D Therefore she abhors them.
F Bonnz deplores violence...
D And doesn't want to introduce weaponry into the world of cuteness that is Fred.
F And Derek.
FD Thank you.
F Say Derek... Do you care what props you have to work with? Or what topics we should handle?
D No, whatever brings in my paycheck. I'd love to play a part in a heist movie... in the next Terminator... as long as it's not another musical.
D Hey Fred... What's the longest drop you've ever made?
F That was when this gross guy I was living on got ill and I had to leave.
F I got a crack in my shell from that. And ever since, whenever I'm walking past someone who thinks he has a sense of humour, he'll shout: "Hey! Your crack is showing!"
D Sorry, that cracked me up. It's a cracking good story. You just need to fill up the cracks in it.
F That's enough, Derek.
D He he.
F I'm very sensitive about my crack.
D I bet a lot of people are sensitive about their cracks! (laughs)
F Are you on crack or something?
D Huh? Gee... Don't get your knickers in a twist.
I always wanted to say that.
F Me too.
D So, when your birthday comes around, would you like me to get you a cape? To cover it up?
F I'm very sensitive about my birthday, too.
FD Dear reader...
F As a flea...
D And as a dustmite...
F We encounter a lot of dirt in your homes. Cat hairs that spread everywhere...
D Bedclothes that stay on the bed forever...
F Carpets that aren't vacuumed frequently...
D And we feel it's your duty to tell you...
FD WE LOVE IT!
D Forget about what your mother taught you...
FD A dirty house guarantees you'll get friends like us!
F Like us?
D Like us!
F And we promise...
FD Lots of entertainment!
F We'll bring you laughs...
D Wit... Fun facts...
F And musicals.
F Ah... the days of my youth... The careless optimism, the love for everyone... Everything is new... Old jokes are funny because you hear them for the first time... (singing) Oh I can't forget the days when I was young! And it dont seem so very long ago!
D You are anxious to do another musical, eh?
F He he. What was your childhood dream, Derek? What did you want as a kid?
D Promise not to laugh? I wanted to be in the Bolshoi ballet.
F HAHAHA... Oh sorry.
D That was not very nice, Fred.
F Aw come on! You, the musical hater? In the ballet?
D Hey! It's an over-romanticised, but under-appreciated art form. Ballet isn't about pink tutus and nutcrackers.
F I bet you'd look great in a tutu! (laughs)
D Ssh! Your turn to confess... What was your childhood wish?
F Wel... I always wanted to swim in blood.
D Ew. Did you ever?
F I did, and it was horrible. It's too thick for the breast stroke.
F People will often ask us...
D What is the best way...
F To get rid of fleas and mites.
D Of course, we won't tell them! (both laugh) Personally I like to say 'alcohol'. It doesn't kill me, but it gets me drunk! (they laugh)
F Oh dear...
D Uh oh...
F We've upset our maker again!
D Sorry Bon!
F Our creator doesn't approve of the use of spirits.
D Unless as a preservative.
D Say Fred... If she abhors violence and alcohol, what DOES she do for fun?
F I guess she makes comics with more entertaining characters.
D Like us! (both laugh)
F Seriously Bon...
D You too, reader!
FD A life is a terrible thing to waste!
D We should put that over the door!
50 Breaking the rules
D Dear readers...
F We're about to reach the halfway point!
F So Derek and I...
D Hi hi!
D We've decided it's time to:
FD PARTY!!! (cue confetti and disco ball)
F Ah, that was great!
F Gave me enough energy to put on a musical!
D Oh no. Shall we give our readers a break and stop with the musical jokes?
F Nah. If the reader wants a break, he can close this book.
That was a joke, dear reader... Don't close the book!
D Say Fred... That was a great party!
F Yeah! Did you like it, reader?
D I hope so.
F Maybe it's time to...
D Announce our latest joke!
F We're not sure if you noticed...
D But we changed places just before we started!
F I'm Derek, he's Fred!
D We pulled your leg! (both laugh)
F You know Derek...
D For the record, reader, I really am Derek.
F Oh that was so funny! Anyway,since the current topic is SPORTS... I hate sports.
D So does our creator. That's why she's...
D So, why do you hate sports?
F The doctor forbade me to do sports because of my crack.
D Oh yes, your crack. Well, sport's not all it's cracked up to be. (laughs)
D I'm sorry.
F You'd better be.
D But what sport did you practice, may I ask?
F Sure you may.
F But if you want to know... High jump.
D High jump?
F High jump. It's a flea thing, you know.
D Oh yeah.
F What about you?
F Who else?
D Oh yeah. I'm a monster at badminton.
F You're always a monster, Derek. (laughs)
F Sometimes, Derek... When I feel the pain in my crack, I feel so old.
D I wouldn't want to be near you when you feel pain in your crack! (laughs)
F Derek, please! Can you stop with the crack jokes? AND the musical jokes?
D We've got to have some continuity.
F Not over MY back!
D Oh please... that back remark is so tempting...
F Fight the temptation, Derek!
D Gee... have we become grouchy or what? We must be getting old...
F Well you know the song... "You're older than you've ever been, and now you're even older...
D That's a great birthday song.
F True too.
F Hey wait! We've forgotten the joke!
D Must be old age.
F Another fun Fred fact: Did you know our creator, Bonnz, is a Pastafari?
D What's that?
F A religious parody that says we were all created by the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
(both laugh loudly)
D Wait Fred... Isn't that sacreligious?
F There's an interesting theory for that...
D Oh oh, here we go...
F Although the definition only embraces churches, (therefore no mosqs), you can really offend any religion A religion is anything you can get attached to: music, alchemy, Care Bear reruns... So desecration could mean disrespect to anything. Making it a useless term. At least it is in this day and age. We can consider ourselves lucky.
F Say, we could start up the religious movement "Fred & Derekism"!
D Why no "Derek & Fredism"?
F Every religion has startup problems!
F There was this one time I was on a dog, and his owners made him climb a clock tower. The view was amazing! Everything was flea-size! (laughs) Have you ever been on top of a tower?
D To me, everything is a tower!
F True... But nothing beats the view of a city, the wind in your hair...
D Uh huh. Sure I'd love to climb a tower someday! As soon as I can convince someone to drag his bed up ten flights of stairs!(laughs)
F Oh yeah! I prefer being a flea. Im more mobile.
D You mean you dangle from the ceiling? (laughs)
D Anyway... I'm sure you get to see nice sights as a flea, but if you knew in whose beds I've been...
F Oh do tell!
F Why not?
D Some things are private.
F You're being mean, Derek.
D Darn tootin'!
F Can you give me a hint?
D Where do you think my love of women's cleavage comes from?
F Hey Derek... Do you have any needs?
D I just went, 17 comics ago.
F No no no no nonono, not that... I meant... Is there something you need?
D Bread dough.
F No, NEED. N.E.E.D.
D Well... If you could scratch my back for me...
F Maybe later. But do you have any lack of something?
D Like what? I've got you, I've got Bonnz, I've got my jokes, I've got skin cells... Why?
F Oh I'm in a generous mood... (singing) In the mood...
D If you want, you can get me a cup of coffee...
F Be right back! (off panel)
D Now that he's not here... He's a crackin' good sport, isn't he? I just wish he wouldn't play his crackling musical records.
F There's your coffee! Did I miss anything?
D Oh no!
F You know... People go through the weirdest ordeals to get rid of us, fleas. They hire exterminators who put a tent around the house and start spraying poison. Humans nees so much protection from the tuff... But it doesn't kill us! It's just not convenient!
D That's entertaining.
F Not entirely... Exterminators look real scary in their get-up! And you got to hide in the crawlspace... And then people can start all over!
D But if it hardly hurts you, why does it say "Biohazard" on the poison?
F Well, it's only dangerous to people, dogs, cats, hasters horses, parakeets, squirrels, foxes, badgers, Tasman devils, dodos, quokkas, tigers, orchids, toads, tortoises...
F It's about time we give our audience another special surprise.
D Indeed! The last one was six comics ago!
F So, what shall we do?
D Where you asking me?
F We're still alone out here, what do you think?
D OK, stupid question... We could do some improv...
F How? And don't we do it all the time? Bonnz makes up our stories while writing them. It's a miracle she doesn't forget her topic sometimes.
(both laugh) We could do a poetry reading...
D We did that already.
D That would be tough...
F A musical!
D I'm not prepared to make that sacrifice.
D How about we give up on the whole musical thing? You stop nagging about doing one, and I'll stop making jokes about them on every page.
F Gee, would you have ANY material left if you stopped making musical jokes?
58 Kick in the head
F Hey Derek, I told you about my crack...
D You make...
F Hold that joke, please. Did you ever sustain major injuries?
D Had to think there... At school we used to play this game... It was called Bunctu. It's a ball game where you play the ball with your back... For the humans: it's easier than you think considering we have 8 legs.
F Aren't you related to spiders?
D Oh, yeah! Just think: millions of little spiders crawling in YOUR BED!!
F (laughs) That should freak them out!
D Oh yeah! Anyway, during this Bunctu game... We were a bit rambunctious. I got kicked in the head.
F Ouch. Did you suffer from any damage?
D Besides the amnesia, paranoia, hallucinations, blurred vision, dizzy spells, migraine and general gnarliness, I just got a bad headache.
59 No way out
D You know, Fred... Sometimes these panels make me feel claustrophobic.
F Who's Claus Trophobic and why haven't you introduced me yet?
D I'm serious! I just feel like there's no way out, you know.
F You know the exit's right there? You took it 17 comics ago!
D But still... There's something creepy about these blue boxes we're put in.
F You've been here for years!
F You need a vacacion, boy!
D Excuse me?
F Gratuitous Zappa reference. You really need a change of scenery.
D Beg our creator for cleavage?
F We did that already!
D Oh yeah!
F How about a different colour, Bon?
(next panel is pink)
F Is this better?
D I don't like pink.
F Bon likes to get rid of all the pink colours she has.
D Hey Fred... What book would you bring with you if you were taken to a desert island?
F If I'd be there, it wouldn't be deserted anymore, would it?
F Reminds me of a good joke...
D Oh help.
F Two men get shipwrecked and are stuck on a desert island. They're doing their best to keep each other entertained... Says one to the other: "But for the idea, right, what book would you take with you to a desert island?"
F But to answer the question... I'd bring Raft-Building 101. And you?
D Let's see... Á la recherche du temps perdu...
F Isn't that 7 books?
D 101 Great Conundrums... Autobiography Of A Flea... The Official Rock Paper Scissors Strategy Guide... Lord Of The Flies... I Been In Sorrow's Kitchen And Licked Out All The Pots... Cold Spaghetti At Midnight... Elks Do Not Speak English... Do Bugs Have Bottoms?...
F We do.
D Enslaved By Ducks... I'm Not Hanging Noodles On Your Ears...
F ONE book, Derek!
61 Fairy Tale
D I'd love to bring a book of fairy-tales to the desert island.
F You made up your mind! Thank heavens!
D I loved fairy tales as a kid. I'm quite romantic, you know.
F (laughs) Derek Dustmite, Prince Charming!
F Just messing with you...
D Fairy tales just never lose their magic.
F Bolshoi ballet, fairy tales... It's like I got to see a new side of you in this series!
D Come on, didn't your parents tell you fairy tales?
F Only this one: Once upon a time there was a flea who was curious and left home. Then he encountered the noisy wind monster who ate him whole.
D Fred's great trauma.
F The moral is: beware of hoovers.
D So no handsome princesses for you, then? I'd love to be in the Princess And The Pea.
D Because of the huge bed!
D Hey Fred.... (flies up into the air) Huh?
D (lands) What on earth was that?
F I didn't know dust mites could jump that high. What happened, did you see a mouse?
D Ha-ha. I have no idea, it's... (flies up again) AAH! (lands) F It happened again!
D How observant of you.
F Are you hurt?
D Nah, I'm f... AAH! (flies up again, lands) Who is doing that!!!
F You are.
F Are you magnetic? Hypnotised? ...Poltergeist?
D (flies up again) DWAH! (lands) I'll try to enjoy it next time.
F How odd! Oh wait, I got it... it's VOODOO!
D That's absurd. There must be someone playing... Wait, I got it! BON! Stop doing that!
63 Do Not Disturb
D If there's one thing I love, it's freaking people out! Disturbing people is my forté.
F I gathered that from all those crack jokes.
D Hee hee! Just imagine: thousands of my friends, crawling around in your bed! (laughs)
F Not sure I like that...
D You could wear a sign that says "Do not disturb".
F Was that a joke?
D I'm losing my touch.
F You've lost your touch?
F Well remember, it's always in the last place you look.
D That wasn't very funny.
F Yes it was!
D No it wasn't!
F Goodness, we must be getting tired... we're so cranky!
D We could take a nap!
(the last panel is a pink Do Not Disturb-sign)
D Getting rid of your excess pink again, Bon?
F Ah, Paris! City of art, romance, architecture... Lethal driving...
D You like bad driving?
F Just the blood. Ever been to Paris?
D I've never left this town. It's a sealed tuna sandwich.
D Gratuitous Zappa reference.
F Ever considered travelling?
D I love it here! I know every bed and carpet, plenty of food to go around... And I love hanging out in teddy bears! Kids hug you, adults tell you their intimate secrets...
F Tell me more!
D Aw... That would be rude.
D There once was this guy, middle-aged male... Blabbing to his bear on how nasty his wife was. Nagging on how he never clears up behind him... His wife came in and started laughing uncontrollably!
D You like horror films, Fred?
F I'm a bit ambiguous about them. On one hand I do like to watch them. But then, watching so much blood shed... It's a shame to waste good food! (they laugh) No... The more blood, the more fun. Vampires, blood fountains, Elizabeth Báthory...
F A woman who slaughtered many women to bathe in their blood.
D Ew. Which one's your favourite horror film?
F I used to love Psycho.
F Until I discovered they used chocolate sauce for the shower scene! I felt like such a fool...
D Did you mean that?
F No, I was kidding.
F And you? Do you like horror films?
D Oh, I'll watch anything.
F Black comedies?
F Black Beauty?
F Baby Geniuses?
F Costume drama?
D Ye... D'oh!
F I love snow. And you?
D I never could make out what he was saying.
F You lost me.
D 90s rapper.
F Oh. No, I meant the weather condition. The pure flakes gently twirling down.... The soft blanket covering the earth... The festive colours...
D You've been eating poets again!
F Hee hee!
D Sometimes, when it snows, I'll sit on the window sill and look outsie. I hear the children scream, watch them toss snow balls, watch cars get stuck, my favourite, see people slipping and falling, fighting frost feelings fiercely. Watching all that makes me think: "What a fine day for staying in bed!"
F I see you too get poetic from snow.
D No... I get poetic when I think of beds!
F You know, Derek...
D I'm running out of jokes to say at that opening.
F May I continue, please?
F I used to live in a drum.
D I sense another gratuitous Zappa reference.
F Don't worry.
D What sort of drum did you live in?
F The musical instrument. I briefly lived in the skin on top.
D Isn't that noisy?
F Fortunately, it was never played. But if I jumped, it sounded like I was wearing concrete boots! Everything around me would be shaking... It was fantastic! But then again, I'd get the same shaking sensation if I sit on a dog that's cold.
D No hot dogs, then?
F I think we could all see that one coming. Hey Bon, I got a great idea! How about you draw some tumbleweed next time Derek tells a bad joke?
D Hey! I do have a better laugh ratio than you!
F Nuh uh.
D Wanna bet?
D OK Fred, here's the bet: If I make the first bad joke, I'll stop making jokes about musicals.
F I'd rather you stop making jokes about my crack.
D I've got a nice joke for that one up my sleeve. On the other hand, if YOU make the first bad joke, you have to stop nagging about musicals. Making it a win-win situation for the readers.
FD Isn't that sweet of us?
D What's the next topic Bon? Hero, fun! Who's your hero, Fred?
F Superflea! Ah how I miss that cape! (appears in the rest of the comic with cape) Thanks Bon!
D I meant... Is there someone who inspires you, someone you admire?
D Outside the mirror?
F I love me anywhere!
(beat) (something brown appears in the panel)
D I'm a bit confused. Was that brown bit supposed to be tumbleweed?If so, I've won! Yay! (dances) (sings) I have beaten Freddie...
F Stop gloating, Derek.
D Oh please?
F Gloating is a very annoying habit, Derek. You should break with it.
D Aw please! It's entirely way too much fun!
F Not to me.
D You should try it sometime! I love annoying people. Like, bumping my leg up and down... then if somebody asks "Please, stop it!", I'll pretend I wasn't aware I was doing that and say "Excuse me", and then I chuckle to myself.
F You're mean, Derek!
D And proud of it!
F Why do you take pleasure out of other people's misery?
D Oh, misery is a big word... Let's call it hyper-sensitivity. I mean, if you freak out when someone bounces his leg, you really need a vacacion! (laughs)
F True... But it's still not very nice...
D It's the best hobby I ever took up.
F Yeah, right.
F We have great news, reader!
D We've reached another milestone!
F We're now at 2/3 of our marathon...
D Marathon! That's a great way to describe this!
F Accurate, too.
D You readers probably don't understand how incredibly tiring all of this is.
F Although we had a brief rest 7 comics ago, I am feeling tired. Considering a person sleeps for 1/3 of his life...
F... We should perhaps do the last third sleeping.
D Fred... I hate to rain on your parade, but if we do that, the remainder is running the risk of becoming a snooze.
D Unless you talk in your sleep, of course. (laughs)
F But Derek.. Don't you get tired of all this?
D Sure... But we decided to start on this, so we have to finish it too.
F Oh boy, do we really need to finish it?
D I doubt that we would get arrested and jailed just because we didn't make the 100, but we've gotten so far. By now it would be a waste of time if we were just to halt it because we're getting tired. It would be cruel on our creator, not to mention the waste of the paper you can read our snazzy adventures on. So sit back and enjoy the ride.
F At times, dear Derek...
D I'm not a deer.
F... at times I am afraid that this whole blood thing of mine becomes an obsession.
D Well Fred, considering it's your only type of food, and eating is very important to anyone, it's not at all surprising you'd think of it so often.
F I was thinking of blood, sorry.
D When is it an obsession? Does it interfere with everyday life?
F It IS everyday life! It's my FOOD!
D What do you do besides eating?
F I talk to you. I sing... I love music.
D Music like?
F Slayer, My Bloody Valentine...
D It is the theme of your life, isn't it? Perhaps you could do a constructive hobby. Crocheting...
F I'd rather groom rats.
F I'd rather rat grooms.
D Write fanfic...
F "Once there was a beautiful vampire named Edward..."
D Dear reader. You may notice somebody's missing here... It's because I pulled a prank on my friend Fred. You see... He's been getting a little edgy lately. He's getting very tired. So, I told him that today's comic has been cancelled. He's now sleeping late, I suppose... So the prank is to our advantage. Fred gets extra sleep, I get a little space to showcase my ballet classes, you, reader, get a bit of variation... The only loser here is Bonnz, who has to make a comic to fill in the one we skipped. Considering that topic was "mislead", I thought this white lie would be great timing. Thank you. (beat) So... Shall I show you my ballet now? (Three panels of mite ballet follow) Thank you, thank you!. (Fred returns) Fred!
F Derek, what's all this?
D I misled you and used the time to show the readers my ballet skills.
F Aw, pity I missed that!
73 I Can't
F Say Derek... If you're so good at balled, why aren't you doing it for a living?
D Good question.
F Thank you, thank you!
D It's a sad story. When I was younger, it was my raison d'ętre, but a lot of things got in the way. My parents didn't like the idea, there isn't much work in the dust mite ballet scene, there were economic troubles... And of course I couldn't stick to my diet. I just looove eating!
F Me too. Must be hard to take "I can't" for an answer.
D Oh it is, it is, it absolutely is! But it taught me a lot about myself and life in general. The whole "believe in yourself" moral from cartoons is a load of nonsense. If one path to your destiny is blocked, another will appear.
D I nicked it. And my raison d'ętre turns out not to be ballet at all. Life is just about getting to tomorrow, keeping on going, breathing, laughing, being! And in order for me to do that, I just need to stay in bed and eat!
FD AREN'T YOU JEALOUS, READER?
F It's about time I confronted you... Lay down the cards, so to speak. I've REALLY had it with your crack jokes.
D Calm down, Fred. The last one I made was 19 comics ago, and you weren't even in the panel!
F You make jokes about me behind my back?
D Oh please, Fred! This whole gig is hard on me too! I've had to come up with so many jokes, at some point you can't make up any better ones! And I know I said I had another joke up my sleeve, but I'll let it be for you. So please, don't get upset... In the mean time, I'll take a small break. (leaves)
F Derek? Hey, now I can put on a musical! I always loved this song from Annie Get Your Gun...
(singing) Anything you can do, I can do...
Wait, that doesn't really work on your own, does it? Oh dear... what else can I come up with...
(singing) Send in the clowns... (Derek comes in with a cake) Hey, speak of the devil...
D Look what I got you, Fred! A CAKE! Made it myself!
F Wow, is there any blood in it?
D Err... no.
F What do we do with it then?
D Well Fred, the normal procedure of getting rid of a cake, is to eat it.
F Eat it?
D Yes, eat it.
F But there's no blood in it!
D Who ever heard of blood in a cake?
F There's blood pudding, isn't there?
D Blood pudding isn't cake!
F I wouldn't know, I have my blood straight from the tap! Who'd want to waste time cooking?
D So you've never had a cake in your life?
D Dear Readers... We are about to witness a grand moment in comic history: Fred is going to eat his first cake EVER!
F Aren't you eating along then?
F Is that because you know what's in it?
D No... There just isn't all that much cake.
F Hey... I could go out and get us a mirror! Then it'll look like we have 2 cakes!
D What's the point in that then?
F Good point.
D You just eat that on your own. I put lots of love in it.
D Hey, what happened to the cake?
F I had to eat it between comics. Our creator had her fill of drawing cakes she couldn't eat. (they laugh)
D But now our readers can't see you eating your first cake!
F Don't worry. I'm sure they won't be heart-broken about it...
D I am...
F Ah, Derek... (they hug)
D Thanks for the hug, my friend! Have you ever been broken?
F I've broken the ice a couple of times... The egg shell when I hatched... But sadly I've never broken the bank! (they laugh)
F We should get that interference fixed, something might be broken.
D It's how Bon lets us know she doesn't like something we said.
F Oh dear, what was it this time?
D Gambling. Bon encourages the homo ludens, but loathes institutional gambling.
F Gee... For a proud Pastafari she sure is uptight!
D Oh yeah!
F (singing) I'm broken... all over... mean daylight... while sleeping...
D What's that?
F A testament to my love of good songs.
D Huh. (beat) That song's an odd pick for a Slayer fan!
F Och, fan is a big word...
D What, three letters is big?
F I mean, I wouldn't call myself a fan...
D It was a joke, sweetie.
F But I just had to buy "Reign in Blood". I love that title!
D I'll bet.
F Did you ever do something like that? Performed something as tribute?
D Besides the ballet I did when you were out?
F Would you do that again for me?
D No. Well... I don't know if there's anyone for me to pay homage to. But I did write some glorifying p
oetry. F Poetry?
D You forgot our insanity comic? I've written many love poems for my bed.
F NOW I'm curious! Can you do one please?
D Oh bed, my bed...
D Oh bed, my bed...
There are no words that can be said
Or written to express thy beauty.
F WHA HAHA!
78 Skipped accidentally
D WILL YOU *#&% STOP INTERRUPTING!
F Derek! Such language!
D I'm pouring my heart out here!
F You know Bon hates cursing!
D OK, I'll bite. Why does she hate cursing?
F It's so cheap! There are hundreds of good offending terms, and you can write so many more, but people only use the F-word. The F-word is not funny in or by itself. It may be realistic in some cases, but it's uncreative.
D She's even more uptight than I thought!
F Fortunately, she does allow precision F-strikes. And you have to admit, she never puts us in crsing situations. Which is very nice of her. And it beats calling each other by any of HER profanity inventions.
F Anarchistic christmas tree!
F Bag of moth balls!
D Rubik's cube!
D Chopstick player!
F Collection of Peruvian telephone pole isolators!
F Ha, I could go on like this forever!
D Please don't!
D Say, if the F-word isn't funny in itself, what word is?
F Randomness too is quite funny.
F Sometimes, in moderate doses. Gossamer. Chipolata. Raffish.
D I see what you mean about moderate doses.
F I cannot lie. Do you have a favourite word?
D Yesterday I would've said 'cleavage', but I just changed to bosom.
D And you?
F Oh, there are so many beautiful ones! Bookkeeper. Punnet. Candlewick. Hemidemisemiquaver. Brouhaha. Tiff. Tattle. Swivel. Swashbuckling. Kitsch is a beautiful word.
D The great thing about collecting words is they don't take up as much space as other collections. You should see our creator's comic book stash. HA!
F Uh, Derek... Why would you mock comic books? We ARE comics, after all!
D Gee... That just ruined my day!
F Well, we could wish hard, perhaps Bon could change us into computer game characters!
D Ooh! I want to be Leisure Suit Larry!
81 Pen and Paper
F Well Derek...
D I'm not a well.
F That's even worse than your deer joke!
D Sorry. Carry on!
F I would but I forgot what I was going to say.
D Oh right! Your forgetfulness! I remember that comic.
F I don't. What was our topic again?
D Pen and paper.
F RIGHT! I got it!
D Hold it tightly then!
F Anyway... It's a very humbling thought. We're but biro smudges on cheap paper. Sprouted from the brain of a nobody who has a very silly sense of humour. Just look around! Everything you see here has been created with nothing but pen, paper and a lot of silliness. Who are we? Do we exist?
D Fred? Don't get me wrong, Fred but now you are doing three things. First of all, you are diminishing yourself and me. Secondly, you're confusing the audience. Thirdly, you made me realize why you are having so much trouble remembering things: you think too much!
D Hey, what kind of a topic is that?
D What on earth do we do with a +? What should it mean?
F It could be a 'plus'...
D Nothing positive about vagueness, Fred!
F It indicates positivity in math!
D Right. I dropped that in school.
F Pity. It could also be a t. Well, knowing how Bon writes, it could be anything!
F In Kanji writing it would be 10. Ten.
F It may also be a rune. + is n.
D Maybe it's a little drawing... It could be a post at the sea-side! A sword perhaps!
F That'd be great! We could do a swashbuckling comic!
D Like the Three Musketeers?
F Exac... oh. Why can't we have anything nice?
D Oh, come on, Fred... We have a foosball table in the canteen!
F Oh yeah!
D But the cross is still a mystery!
F It's quite a cross to bear. It just crossed my mind, what do we do when we cross the Rubicon?
D Fingers cross we don't have to, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there.
D I wish I had healing powers.
F Don't we all? So what's the specific reason for this wish?
D Our creator has a cold. She's feeling miserable... She's drawing comics at a much slower pace because of that. And I really need to be free of this, because I'll be visiting a ballet soon. And above all: SHE KEEPS COUGHING IN MY FACE!
F Take a deep breath, Derek... We'll just have to be patient. And ask her if you can have the day off for your ballet. What show are you seeing, by the way?
D Something from the neo-dada school to the music of Alan Erich Floh: Two Breadcrumbs Between Bedsheets.
F WHA HA HA!
D It's not a comedy.
F You mean... they're SERIOUS?! HA HA HA HAHAHAHAHA! I suppose that's why you want to see the premiere! There probably won't be a SECOND show! HAHAHAHA!
D OK I got your point... Now you need your pointe! HAHAHA!
F What are you shivering about, Derek? You didn't catch Bonnz's cold, did you?
F Derek! Didn't your mother teach you to use a hanky? I'out of here until you've adopted proper cold hygiene! (walks away)
D Bred! Dear reader... Blease don't get too close to the page... Or else you bight catch it too! (Fred redurns with hanky) Bred! You brought be a habky! How sweet! Cobe here, let be gibe you a hug!
F NO! Catch... (tosses hanky) Now blow...
F Through your NOSE, Derek! Blow through your nose! Into your hanky, pease.
D Pfffft! There, you ban take it back bow.
F Uhhhh... you keep it. Until you don't need it anymore.
D It needs washing.
F How are you feeling, Derek?
D With by fingers. (Fred laughs, Derek coughs)
F And your personal well-being?
D I feel sick.
F Say Bon, could you make him a scarf? (D has a pink scarf in the rest of the comic) Thanks!
D But... did it have to be pink?
F She's getting rid of her pink colours again, I assume.
F You know what she says about colour boxes: There's NEVER enough black and ALWAYS too much pink!
(Fred laughs, Derek coughs)
F Oh, poor Derek. You're such a trooper! Why don't you take a good rest?
D I cab't leave the readers alobe... Cab't let theb dowb.
F Maybe a nice steam session!
D Oh that soubds fabtastic! (coughs)
(panel fills with green/yellow/blue smoke)
F Bon must be out of mint colour biro.
F Good to see you again, Derek!
D Hey Bred, did abyboby tell you those thibs are a rip-off? (coughs)
86 Seeing Red
F So Derek...
D Soul Derek! I love the sound of that! (sings) I'm a soul man!
F You're still no man, Derek!
D Ah, forget it.
F Anyway, how's the cold?
D Chilly, as always! (laughs)
F I see you got rid of the scarf.
D Yeah. Pink just really isn't my colour.
F What is?
D Blue, of course.
F But I meant...
D I gathered. I feel a lot better, but still a bit nauseous. And I see red spots everywhere.
F Oh, I know the cure for that!
F Close your eyes! (laughs)
F Great to see you in good health! Good thing you're better too!
D Huh? (Fred laughs) Whatever.
F I'm feeling a little peckish.
D You? How can you feel peckish? You just ate an entire cake by yourself! How did you like that by the way?
F By closing my eyes and pretending it was blood. (laughs)
D Hey! But now you mention it, I feel hungry too.
F Me too. I could use a 'bite'. Get it?
F We could do with some food in the canteen.
D Alternatively, you could eat the foosball table.
D Seriously, I could really use some food right about now.
F Well... We could ask our readers to help out again.
D How about it, reader? Just gently place your hand onto this comic, leave it there for a spell...
F Hocus pocus!
D WHat is it? Another paper cut?
F No... My crack is playing up.
D Oh Fred... This BAN on crack jokes has been really hard at times. Times like this one!
F Allright then, you make that joke. I'm already in agony anyway. (beat)
D I forgot.
F Derek! How unlike you! Now I won't be the "forgetful one" anymore! My honour is saved, huzzah!
D Gosh, I feel so old!
F Don't worry, Derek. You'll get used to it eventually.
D It's really bothering me!
F Was it a good joke, then?
F Let's try again: My crack is playing up.
D Nothing, sorry.
F Oh well.
D Wait! I just remembered!
F But now the moment is sorta gone.
89 Through the Fire
F There was this one time...
D There are a lot of times, actually.
F Ssh! Once when I was on this dog, his owners had a barbecue. That stupid dog got too close to the fire. Burnt all his hair! Burned my house down with it, too.
D That's horrible!
D I did burn too, once. I was living in the plush cat of a 12-year-old. She let it lie against a hot lamp. Oh, the stench! I barely made it out in one piece!
F There you have it readers:
FD Don't Play With Fire!
F And be kind to your fleas.
D And dustmites. It's true! Some people treat their dogs or cats like children...
F You mean they say "Get off my lawn, you lousy punks?"
D No, I mean they dress them up, talk baby talk to them, that stuff. But us little things, we get little love!
F Just because you can't see us, doesn't mean we're not cute.
D We need affection too!
FD Just skip the baby talk, please.
F Did I ever tell you I'm a keen musician?
F Oh yeah! In fact I used to play in an orchestra!
D Wow! That's awesome! What type of music did you play?
F Popular classics. The Flea Polka of course, Strauss family, that stuff.
D Wow Fred, you went up 100% in my Cool-ometer! Did you ever record anything?
F Once, long ago. We had a lovely version of the Flea Waltz, then some doofus taped over it!
D When was this?
F Early 90s.
D Hey, are you that old?
D You gotta admit, that's pretty old for a flea. So, what instrument did you play?
F Where are we now?
D We're still here! (they laugh)
F How many more comics?
D This is our 91st comic! Meaning we have 9 more comics to go after this one!
F Wow... We're DROWNING in jokes! I wonder... How many of the brave people who started reading this have come all the way up to here?
D The reader must be drowning in jokes too!
F We'd better teach them how to swim! (Laughs)
D Say Fred, did you invent that joke all by yourself?
F Yes well...
D How about I teach you a thing or two about jokes?
D First off, you'll have to make sure the situation is suitable. Second, you'll have to be quick with your timing. It helps to make a mental list of jokes to make when the situation arises. Thirdly...
F Actually, the answer was 'no'.
D What do you mean, 'no'?
F It's a word used when you're in disagreement with something that had been said.
D What were you reacting to, then?
F I really wasn't interested in a joke lecture.
D You could've said THAT a bit earlier!
F You were flooding me!
D You really need to work on your timing!
F Well reader... Once again, I'm all alone. Derek will be joining us later, and hopefully he'll tell us all about the ballet performance he's attending! It should be fascinating. I mean, Derek at a show? I remember him crying like a cat swung by its tail when I took him to see Hair!
Then again, maybe that was too soon after his dyeing mishap!
(singing) I'm all alone,
all by myself...
Sitting on the shelf...
Thank you, thank you! I just remembered the words. I wrote it in my symphony days. I love it (beat) It's about loneliness. (beat) Shall I sing it again?
D Don't bother.
F Derek! Great to see you! How was the ballet?
D Well... It was overshadowed by the terrible music. They totally raped one of my favourite songs!
F Which one?
D B-I-N-G-O and Bingo was his name-o.
D Say, your birthday is rolling up... What would you like to get?
D You know that's really difficult to gift-wrap? There MUST be something on your wish list! An iron, to get the creases out of your cape?
F You know, I never got to have that Superflea cape?
D Would you like to have it?
F Well... What exactly would I do with a cape? It would cover up my crack nicely...
D A lot of humans could do with something that does that! (they laugh) Fred! You laughed at a crack joke!
F That was because it wasn't me on the receiving 'end'. (they laugh)
D Oh Fred, you're the living end!
F But I'm not sure if I'd be prepared to wear my cape outside. Crack jokes are bad enough, but what about all the Dracula jokes? What if the wind catches it and I fly away?
D Now I want a cape too!
(they both wear a cape, Derek's is pink)
FD WOW! Thanks Bon!
D But did mine have to be PINK!
F You'd better get used to pink then!
D Easy for you to say. I'm sure to get beaten up when I go out dressed like this!
F That means you're DRESSED TO KILL! (laughs)
D Now I know why you love that cape! It's so soft! I felt like a caterpillar in a rose!
F I've never eaten that.
F But it's wonderful, isn't it? Soft, smooth, silken, shiny, shimmering, and above all: SLIMMING!
F It's about time they were brought back into fashion!
FD Are you listening, fashion designers?
D So, shall I get you a cape then? I'll bake you a nice cake, too!
F Oh please, don't bother.
D I'll sing some birthday songs to you...
F Will you perform your ballet for me?
D I'll think about it.
F YAY! (jumps up and down)
D Uh Fred...
D I'm getting nauseous from watching you bounce up and down all the time.
F Shame. I really enjoy doing that!
D Hey Fred... We've been naughty.
F What are you talking about? I'm as clean as a whistle! Ffffff...
D You got to practice your whistling next time you try that joke! I'm sure you wash behind your ears and all that, but it's not what you think. WE SKIPPED A TOPIC! It was an accident, I assure you. But even so, we still have to talk about... DRINK!
F Speaking of which, we could do with more drinks in the canteen.
D Not for me... I love that coffee! And you're right, I could do with some! (leaves)
F I'm not spending another comic shouting! That's so bad for the throat... (Derek comes back, all shaky) What's up with you, Derek? Been having too much coffee?
D I can't help it! They now serve hazel nut coffee!
F That stuff is dangerous, Derek... You should lay it off.
D You know, we're not the only comic by Bonnz.
F Not by a long shot!
D It all started with Mima, the giraffe, continued with Mennie the Martian... Later the Middle-Aged Twos appeared, which has AWESOME character design! Then came Snub and Snob in the Land Of Teachers, and the totally unambiguous Beaver Hills 90210... And that's when we moved in.
F As a sequel to Dot And Dot... Bonnz realized that to make a comic with dots work, the dots had to be humanized. Although we really aren't humans.
D Even after that, Bonnz made more comics. Such as JERKS, a gag series, filled with politically incorrect jokes, the Gwarps, which arose from the war in Iraq....
F But she always stayed true to us!
D It's us who allow her to write at her own pace.
F All the same, you'd expect that with all the years of practice, she'd mastered drawing by now!
D You know...
F That's a Roman goddess, wife of Jupiter. The equivalent of Hera.
D Huh. Who?
D I was saying... I love thunderstorms. The smell of ozone, the sound of rain... the blasts of lightning, the scared kids hiding in their bed...
F Oh you only ever think about eating!
D Just like you.
F You got me there...
F What were we talking about again?
F Oh yeah! Storm indicates windspeeds of over 21 metres per second. That's 9 on the scale of Beaufort. There can only be lightning if it rains or if humidity is high. Raindrops have a positive charge at their bottoms. The drops transport negative charge to the bottom, and positive ions to the top of the cloud, causing charge differences. Lightning on average lasts 1/2000th seconds, and is 40,000 amps strong. The sound of thunder is caused when air is rapidly pushed away, then pulled back, by lightning.
D Wow Fred... It must be why you have memory problems: your hard-drive is full!
D We should do something to clear that memory of yours!
F Whatever for?
D It's for your own safety. It won't be long before you forget to wear your clothes...
F But Derek... I don't wear clothes! And neither do you!
D Gee... This is frightening. What if the cops arrests us? Will DeviantArt accept us when they find out this series has page after page of hardcore nudity? And what's worse: We might catch a cold!
F You already had a cold, remember? You caught it when Bonnz was coughing in your face all the time. She gave you a scarf to keep you warm, but you tossed it away because you don't like PINK! Now THAT's unsafe! Unless you really want pneumonia.
D No thanks. Plus I wouldn't dare ask Bonnz for clothing. You know what a horrible taste in fashion she has? She'd probably send something brown and hideous this way, with bold stripes, blocks and balls.
F Hey Derek... I'm a wee bit bored. Is there a nice puzzle in that conundrum book of yours?
D Why do you always lose one sock in the laundry?
F It gets trapped between the drum and the casing, where it'll dissolve eventually. Any better ones?
D What's the sound of one hand clapping?
F If I had hands, I'd demonstrate it.
D A woman has 7 kids. Half of them are boys. Explain.
D Nothing but the eerie sound of crackling brains filled the room as Fred dreamt up an answer.
F Hush. Is one a hermaphrodite?
D Excuse me?
F Is one both male and female?
D Creative, but no.
F Is one adopted?
F Is their father an unsuccessful magician who made a mistake during his maiden-sawn-in-half trick?
D No, the other half are sons too!
F I sense severe problems with this puzzle.
D Hey Fred. Tell me about that Alone song you wrote.
F You want to know? (bounces) Yay, Fred cares!
D It's a good way to kill time.
F You're mean.
D But funny! Tell me, really!
F Back when I was in the orchestra, we were all invited to write a song to perform. I was having a lot of teenage angst at the time, so I wrote a song about how lonely I was. It may sound silly now, but I've really gotten to like it by now.
D How long did that take?
D Was it ever performed?
F No, it was considered to be too silly.
D That shelf thing is a bit odd, yes.
F Well what else rhymes with myself?
D Elf, delve, twelve, pelf, skelf, Guelph...
F I should ask you next time!
D Please don't.
F But if you think the shelf bit is silly, you should hear the rest of the song!
D Please, don't bother.
F Oh please?
D Save it for a good occasion.
100 Gone: The Fred And Derek Birthday Spectacular
D It's hard to believe, dear readers, but this is the last gag for this series! We did it! Party time! And today is special for another reason... It's Fred's birthday! So enjoy this Grand Finale Birthday Spectacular! And please, I'd really appreciate it if you could help me surprise him. As soon as Fred comes in, yell 'Surprise!' I also have some cake ready for him. Let me get that.
(cake is pushed in) Pfff, it's heavy! And now we wait for Freddie.
(beat) Wait for it...
Quick, he's coming!
(Fred arrives, the word Surprise is written in the panel, in pink)
D There Bonnz goes with her excess pink again!
F Derek, WOW!
D Look! I invented a blood cake for you! Dig in, it's all yours!
F Munch munch
D How was it?
D And to celebrate your birthday, we're having an extra long comic!
F Oh dear...
F I was hoping I could go home early today.
D Leave when you like, it's your party!
D I rehearsed something, especially for you!
(performs ballet, singing)
I'm all alone, all by myself
painfully alone, sitting on the shelf
I can't come down while I am down
Trapped in a shell, just like a clown
When, oh when will the pain leave?
It's stuck firmly, like clogs in a sieve
It's killing me, and so is this song!
D Thank you, thank you!
F Speaking of comic history, we had 2 historic moments on the previous page! The blood cake and your musical.
D That was a ballet.
F No, a musical.
D Come, let's not argue. It's your birthday!
D Say Bon, what did you get for Fred?
D You did remember, didn't you?
(a package appears in the panel)
F Ooh, for me?
D Open it!
(Fred opens it, it explodes)
F BON!! Just because we're blue, that doesn't mean we're Smurfs!
D Didn't you get anything for your hard-working friend?
(Fred gets a cape)
F WOW! A cape! SUPERFLEA!!
D You're not seriously making that your vocacion? It sounds so dangerous!
F Danger is my middle name! Can I keep my cape, Bon? ... Yay!
(bounces up and down) Why don't you bounce along, Derek?
D Allright... (bounces too, but not high)
F Whee! Yippee! (Derek has stopped) Oh have you stopped?
D I think I'm gonna be sea-sick.
F Not in here!
D Excuse me! (leaves quickly)
F Poor Derek, I hope he's OK... Derek? (Derek's come back, all green)
F Interesting colour you got there! Now we got a fancy-dress party! I'm Superflea, you're a whatever... Let's convince the readers to dress up. Dear Reader, This comic will be infinitely more fun if you dress up as something. May I suggest a vampire? ... Count Duckula.
F Fred? I'm still feeling a little sick!
D Why don't you lie down for a second? (Derek lies down)
F (Singing) The sun will come out...
D FRED! Ssh!
F (chuckles) (Derek has his normal colour back)
F You're better, great!
D Up and ready for love!
F Excuse me?
D Just trying to woo the ladies.
F And, does it work? Do you score a lot with the ladies?
D You don't want to know.
F (bounces) I DO!
D Please, don't bounce right now.
F Hey, it's my birthday... How about we play a game?
F Yeah, I like it.
D A game like what?
F Do you still have that die?
F A song guessing game?
F 20 Questions? I got a good one?
D Animal, mineral or vegetable?
D That is mathematically correct, but it's not helping.
F Stick to yes/no questions, please.
D Okay... Is it an animal?
F That was quick.
D Oh Fred... Don't tell me I just won!
F All-right, I won't tell you.
D OK I got one...
F Okay... Does it play the Price Is Right-theme when you press it?
D Ehh... no.
F Can you use it to catch bunnies?
F Does it spin around you in circles?
D I suppose so, yes.
F Is it the sun?
D I'm flabberghasted!
F (bounces) I won, I won!
F Right, your nausea. Sorry about that. Say Derek, I always wanted to know... What's the stuff they pack canned ham in?
(Derek has to leave quickly)
F (Chuckles) (Derek returns)
F Say Derek, if you're ill, why don't you go home? I'll need to leave for my birthday bash, anyway.
D Let's go, then.
(They leave, 6 empty panels follow.)
The End. Thank Goodness.
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