799: Stephen Hawking
Stephen Hawking is a renowned theoretical physicist, and quite possibly the world's smartest human being. He is almost completely paralyzed due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and communicates with a speech-generating device, as shown in the first panel. In this comic, he asks Cueball and Megan if they want to go see a movie, but they take it as a scientific declaration that they should go see a movie and have it published in a newspaper. In the final panel, Hawking is shown hanging his head in sadness since all he wanted to do was see a movie with his friends.
This can be taken as a satire of sensationalism of science in popular media, particularly in emphasizing the viewpoints of well-known and popular personalities in science. A similar theme was used in 1206: Einstein.
The title text continues the joke, with innocuous comments by Hawking interpreted as important revelations.
- [Stephen Hawking is facing a pair of people. His voice appears in a square machine readable font.]
- Stephen Hawking: I thought maybe later we should go see a movie.
- [The two people are running.]
- [The front page of a newspaper appears instead of a third panel.]
- Name of the paper - The Times
- Main headline. - Physicist Stephen Hawking Suggests We See More Films
- [A picture of Stephen Hawking is in the center of the page.]
- Picture's caption. - Smartest Man Alive
- Secondary headline. - What Does He Know That We Don't?
- Large quote in article body. - Is this a warning?
- [Stephen Hawking is sitting alone, looking depressed.]