Annotations for “Untitled (Drink!)” 8 pages in Cinema Purgatorio #9
Writer: Kieron Gillen, Artist: Nahuel Lopez
Note: Some of this is obvious, but you never know who’s reading and what their exposure is. If there’s anything we missed or got wrong, let us know in comments.
General: Fringe drinks with Tommy Zero and his friends, who are trying to figure out her gig. Bloody Susan and Mister Boom re-enter and stage a challenge against Fringe.
- What does the sign on the ground “please do not bang” refer to?
- “The Reloading Bar” is a multi-layered pun. Many games, while first starting up, or when the player enters a new area, display a “loading bar” to indicate that progress is still happening, even though gameplay is not currently available. “Reloading” also refers to a frequent activity done with weapons in macho games such as first person shooters. And of course, there is the colloquial sense of going to a bar to “get loaded”, as in “drunk”.
- The character is Modded protagonist Fringe, who rechristens herself Lady Glasshat Dildobeast.
- “Juice condensed from the tips of mountains” is a joke made more explicit on P4,p2.
- Seated, left to right, are Fringe, Tommy Zero, unnamed gamer, and Gory Balls.
- “He said ‘balls'” points out the juvenile way many gamers find silly sexual entendres in innocuous statements. Gory interprets the word ‘hard’ to indicate a hard (erect) penis.
Page 2 – no specific annotations.
- “Fill out my hexicon” has hexicon presumably analogous to a Pokedex, a device which lists all of the monsters you’ve captured, and which creates a goal (implicit or explicit) to “catch ’em all”.
- “Dew of the mountains” is Mountain Dew, a soft drink favored by many gamers due to its high caffeine and sugar content.
- “Always say ‘yes’ to side questzzzzz!” refers to “side quests” which are optional objectives within story-based games. While the game can be completed faster without engaging in side quests, finishing fast is not the goal for most players. Side quests can provide extra pieces of story that help flesh out the main narrative. Side quests almost always result in the player gaining resources of some sort which can aid in the rest of the game.
- “Xperience is the pointzzzz!” – Another multi-layered pun. As mentioned in the previous panel’s note, games are entertainment, so the player ideally wants to prolong their experience of the game, and experience all the content that the game has to offer. Also, one of the typical resources gained during a side quest is “experience points”, which make the plauer’s avatar more powerful. These “experience points” are often abbreviated by gamers as “XP”, so the spelling here of “XPERIENCE” is a hybrid form.
- Mister Boom and Bloody Susan re-enter.
- “7/10 on initial release, turning to 6/10 in later installments.” refers to how most game review sites grade on a 10-point scale, as seen here. In the early days, games received only a single score, but this has changed as the practice of serial games, and games with major post-release content updates has become more prevalent.
Critics of the game review system have been known to refer to it as the “7-9 scale”, referring to the range that the vast majority of scores seem to land in. Hence, a score of 7/10 would generally be seen as “barely acceptable”, and a score of 6/10 is a clear insult.
- “MF” is motherfucker.
- The graffiti says “One life left.” In many videogames, a plauer’s avatar is given a certain number of “lives”. When the avatar “dies”, the game does not end, but rather the avatar is sent back to an earlier point in the game with one fewer life, and allowed to try again. However, if the player is on their last “life”, and their avatar “dies”, then the game does end. Hence, the phrase refers to a desperate situation, where failure will be disastrous.