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Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Revision as of 17:59, 4 March 2014

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki!
We have an explanation for all 1400 xkcd comics, and only 49 (3%) are incomplete. Help us finish them!

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The nice thing about headcannnons is that it's really easy to get other people to believe in them.
Title text: The nice thing about headcannnons is that it's really easy to get other people to believe in them.

Explanation

This is a pun on the homophones "canon" and "cannon".

A "canon" describes things that are true for a particular fictional world. (The term is derived from the Biblical canon, a list of books considered to be authoritative scripture by a particular religious community.) A work's definitive canon is determined by its creators, but fans can have their own personal canons—things that they believe should be true for the setting, such as new romantic pairings or personal answers to questions officially left unexplained. Such a term for a canon that only exists in that fan's head is, thus a "headcanon". Depending on the person, new headcanons can be frequently invented in response to ideas or realizations that pop up out of nowhere (hence the comic's first panel); some are simply strange or unconvincing, but others can be notoriously contagious and even sometimes return to the author, who may decide to officially canonize them.

A cannon, meanwhile, is an explosive-based projectile weapon. While the more esoteric headcanons are easy to ignore, it is decidedly more difficult to not notice or believe the existence of a cannon strapped to one's head.

Randall addresses both homophones in the title text by putting three consecutive "n"s in "headcannnon".

Transcript

[Black Hat walks in.]
Black Hat: New headcannon:
[Cueball is sitting at his desk, using his computer.]
Cueball: Yeah?
[Black Hat lifts his hat, revealing his "headcannon": a tiny cannon on the top of his head. The headcannon fires and blows up Cueball's desk, the explosion throwing Cueball backwards.]
Headcannon: BOOM
Cueball: AUGH!

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