This page is dedicated to comments that Aaron made regarding Endtown either in email to readers or in the GoComics comments section, as well as Frequently Asked Questions.
Reader: Wow, in competition with your former self - that's a tough one! Sympathies for Gustine.
Aaron: It's called "Schism Syndrome". All of the mutants suffer from it to various degrees. More on that later...
Aaron: Rule of thumb.. Topsiders use disintegration technology that has no recoil. Endtowners use rayguns and "blasters" that do.
Reader: Is it just me or do you think Professor Mallard would sound like Ludwig von Drake?
Aaron: He has the voice of Hans Conried.
Aaron: Ultimately, I want Endtown to outstrip Ziggy in popularity. That's right, Tom Wilson. This town ain't big enough for the both of us...
Aaron: Honestly, I've never figured out how it's (Gustine) pronounced.. I pronounce the first syllable “gust”, as in “a gust of wind”, rather than “just”. For the record, I got the name from a street in Shreveport, LA, a few blocks down from where a relative lived.
Reader: One thing I've noticed is there doesn't seem to be any feral animals around. Did they all die, or are there mutant animals, too? Apparently plants mutated, unless the mutant tree in the Modern Times strip was once human, too.
Aaron: There is a story behind that. I'll get around to it in time.
Aaron: Allie is indeed smoking a cigarette.. Endtown has a lucrative black market for that kind of thing.
Aaron: They (mutants and Topsiders alike) have started over again from Year Zero. At this point in the story, (when Wally enters Endtown) it has been six years since The End of Civilization As We Know It.
Aaron: Doc Chase is kind of a caricature of Milburn Stone (Doc Adams) from Gunsmoke, but, yeah.. he does look rather like Deacon Mushrat now that you mention it.. He is a badger.
Reader: The chair (in Doc Chase's clinic) has had so much to do that I think we should give it a name.
Aaron: The chair's name is Todd L. Geyer III.
Aaron: Wally's got much more of an acceptance curve than Holly. I'm kinda patterning him after Mickey Rooney in pictures like The Big Wheel.. It's all about personal growth.
Reader: I thought that the bean issue had been solved?
Aaron: Mallard's partial solution was the aforementioned vitamin cake. The combination of both prevents people from starving, but the lack of variety (and, frankly, vitamin cake sounds truly vile) is driving some folk around the bend.
Aaron: Endtown has an entire series of canals. These provide power, supply drinking water, give aquatic Endtowners a place to live.. and where they come from and where they go are mysteries.. much like Endtown itself.. Time will tell.. :-)
Aaron: Holly is over 30.. several years older than Wally, in fact.. Their respective natures belie their true ages.. polar opposites.. (She is) Not Flo of “kiss mah grits” fame!! I will deny her as an influence to my dying day.. I love the name, tho (a coincidence). I had actually initially considered “Polly” as my character's name but nixed it because of Connie Booth's character in Fawlty Towers.
Reader: Got dark fast. This is all underground, so what does Endtown use for central lighting? And in a place that has no sun, what constitutes "late"?
Aaron: Endtown has a series of huge light panels embedded in its ceiling. The lights simply switch on in the morning and off at night. I imagine it's rather jarring.. There's room for improvement, and that's just around the corner.. :-)
About the ComicEdit
Why is Endtown only in black and white and not color?
Aaron doesn't have assistants and doesn't have time to add coloring himself.
Will Endtown get into the newspapers?
Depends on the offer. But not if it requires restrictions to what can be in the storylines.
Is there an Endtown graphic novel?
The first two volumes are available from Amazon.com.
Why is the language used in Endtown so offensive?
Aaron follows the FCC code. If the language offends you, he apologizes and hopes that you will find a different comic you enjoy more.
What happened with the "aaronneathery.com" domain name?
Squatters. Aaron has moved to aaronneathery.org.
How far ahead are the comics drawn out?
It had been 55-56 strips, about 3 months worth. The lead time has dropped for various reasons.
What's your background?
Check out the interview here.
About Endtown and TopsideEdit
What happened to the feral animals after the War?
Can mutants have cross-species children?
Where are the children?
This will be explained in time.
How does the mutagenic virus work?
Answer 1) "The mutagenic virus hits everyone differently, but there are certain “rules”. About the question of the Topsiders' vulnerability, there's a big risk that, were you to allow a Topsider to mutate, you'd end up with something even more dangerous to contend with (there's a specific law governing mutations that make it unlikely that you'd end up with anything harmless)."
Answer 2) As given in the Aug. 10, 2011, strip, mutations depend on one's conscious state at the time of exposure to the mutagen. Those who turned into "anthros" (humanoid animals) were unconscious or unborn (in the womb). If you're wide awake you become a monster, and if you're under the influence, you become something weird.
Why don't they grow their own food in Endtown?
In the Aug., 2011, arc we're told that they're trying to, but are several years away from being self-sufficient.
Some information on Endtown
The story takes place 6 years after the War (AKA: The End of Civilization As We Know It) (as of Wally's entry into Endtown).
The introduction film Wally watches was made in Year 3.
As of Year 3, the population of Endtown was roughly 7,000.
Known community and location names
Endtown: The most well-known enclave within the comic, it is 1 mile underground, and is protected by dustcrawlers. There are 4 security perimeters on the surface. When Al and Gustine were pursued by Topsiders, they were detected and redirected after reaching only the outermost perimeter.
Zone One: This may be one of the closest locations to Endtown. It's mostly been picked over. It's also the location where Petey, Al and Gustine tried to evade their Topside pursurers. It's approximately a half-day walk.
Epsilon 2: This is the place that Al and Hank visited in "A Fistful of Beans". Mallard refers to it as Community Epsilon's turf.
Westchester Park: One of the Topsiders mentions having fought here. Nothing else is known about it.
Hillside: Referred to by the Oracle as being at the edge of the Great Waste, Hillside is one of the biggest ruins known so far. It's the home of Apex Industries, the company that produced Amesworth radiation-based disintegrator weapons, including the Mark 2 - a mobile base station designed to eliminate hundreds of mutants at a time. According to Sparkplug, mutants and/or humans lived in the ruins for the first 3 years after The End. Eventually it gets trashed and is overrun by dittos. (Technically, though, Hillside was a massive, sprawling complex prior to The End, and most of the current ruins are just bits and pieces of the original Hillside.)
Zone Six: Mentioned by the Mayor as the place he visited the last time he went topside. He lost 2 partners in that mission.
Epsilon Beta and New Persia: When Al and Gustine are trapped in Zone One and convinced that they've led the Topsiders to Endtown, Al mentions these two places as possible options that might take them in. All that's known about them is that Epsilon Beta is "to the west". In the Aug. 12, 2011 strip New Persia is the only one of the above communities listed on Prof. Mallard's alarm box. It's possible that Epsilon 2 and Epsilon Beta are the same place
Alpha Seven, Albion West, Beta Theta and Deep City: Other communities that appear only as names on Prof. Mallard's alarm box. Nothing is known about them yet.
Zone Nine is mentioned in Flask's flashback as the ruins near her Topsider colony where the former humanoid mutant Petey had been captured around Year 3.5. As shown in the strip, it consisted of partially decomposed buildings.
About the CharactersEdit
What is the timeline for Al and Wally?
The story arc for Wally and Holly takes place at roughly the same time as that for Al and Gustine. However, Al and Gustine are back in Endtown by the time Holly and Wally visit Jackrabbit's "self-acceptance seminar".
Will we see Al & Gustine again?
What's Petey's backstory?
Everyone in the "Quest" arc will reappear later. Petey's origins and Flask's past are explored in detail starting with the Aug. 28, 2012 strip.
What's the badge Wally is wearing?
This was explained in the flashback starting Mar. 27, 2012. It's an Amesworth Radiation detector and will turn white when the wearer is nearing a potentially lethal radiation zone. It was given to him by a school teacher in Bordavia.
What's the full name for each of the characters?
- Hank Stillwater (idiot zapped when trying to enter Topsiders ranks in A Fistful of Beans).
- Albert Anderson and Gustine Greene: (the heroes of the "Quest" arc) (Gustine weighs 700 lbs and was at least 30 when The End hit). Al and Gustine decide to get married in the middle of Gustine's Quest. Pre-End Gustine can be seen in the 2009/05/19 and 2009/05/20 strips.
- Professor Nikolai Xavier Mallard, Ph.D: Endtown's resident mad scientist.
- Sam "Sparkplug" Sanders: Crazy scientist in Hillside. (Newspaper is the Hillside Herald). Wife is Agnes. Daughter is April. Originally worked at Apex Industries, and lives at 307 Falcon, Hillside, 113(?). When Agnes mutated, she ate April before Sam shot her in the forehead.
- Capt. Philomena (Blackie) Flask: Endtown's security chief. ("Blackie" is an homage to Blackie DuQuesne, the villain from Doc Smith's Skylark novels). Flask's main weapon is a Topsider blaster.
- Jacob (Jack) J. Jackrabbit: paranoid anti-human writer at the Endtown Examiner (his editor is Philo Foxworthy).
- Walter Trimble and Dottie Proctor: Walter is the Endtown mayor, Dottie works as Philo's secretary at the Examiner and lives with Walter. (Col. Blake is the inspiration for Walter.)
- Mike Mole and Bill Crawford - scientists that interrogate Al and Gustine; both killed by Flask.
- Oscar Krellman: The crab that rescues Wally.
- Louie Lynx: The catnip addict at Holly's cafe.
- Allie Alvarez: The alligator that finds Wally topside. Friend of Holly's. Alky.
- Wally Wallechinsky: Resourceful topside vagrant.
- Holly Hollister: Cafe waitress. Age 30.
Miscellaneous Character Information
- Louie Lynx: The catnip addict that fights with Wally in Holly's cafe.
- Terry and Cliff: Petty thieves trying to find topside food.
- Petey: From PT - Personnel Transporter. Serial number is 31715. Real name unknown.
- The Topsider robot dogs are called Multi-Use Terrestrial Trackers ("MUTTs").
Why do certain characters have animal-based last names?
According to Jack Jackrabbit's "self-acceptance" seminar", taking on a last name that relates to the animal type you've become is one step towards accepting one's "mutanity". It's also by extension an indicator that you are part of Jack's growing "anti-human/anti-Topsider" campaign.
Topsiders identified by name: