With many of our comics it’s easy for us to identify a single source of inspiration for the joke. This one, however, takes its inspiration from several different things which were rattling round my brain, until they all collided into this joke.

The first was probably the revelation that Ewan McGregor actually made the noise of a lightsaber during his fight scenes in The Phantom Menace. Who can blame him for his inner child coming out in that situation? If you replace the guns with sticks in this comic, the final scene isn’t that far from my own childhood.

“Hollywood actor can’t resist doing own sound effects!” might make for an amusing headline, but it wasn’t enough to inspire a comic on its own. But increasingly I’ve noticed articles about biometrics, and how they will be used to create Smart Guns that will only fire for approved people. There’s even one American politician trying to push a bill to make biometrics mandatory on guns, including retro-fitting it to older weapons. Good luck with that!

I’ve also noticed an increasing tendency to use convoluted acronyms to name things. The overabundance of acronyms and abbreviations in technical circles is really little more than an effort to make things sound more complex than they really are…

Running out of RAM? If you don’t install more DDR DIMMs then your machine will swap to the HDD or SSD, which could be connected via USB, SATA, PATA or even SCSI.

In my experience computers aren’t really that complex and most people can understand them, as soon as you drop the acronyms and start using normal words. Of course most techies are glad of all these obstacles to understanding, because if people realise that these things really aren’t so tricky, there’ll be no more need for the Nerd Herd.

Finally, the close-quarters gunfight in the last scene is a little homage to the genius that is Police Squad.

Cette bande dessinée est aussi disponible en français
This comic is also available in French

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↓ Transcript
[Scene shows a Grey presenting to an audience with curtains behind him]

G1: Ladies and gentlemen, police officers and warlords.
Today I am pleased to announce a huge leap forwards in weapons safety systems.

G1: Our latest armaments feature our patented voice recognition technology which will only allow the weapon to fire when a password is spoken.

G1: By default our weapons are configured to recognise their own brand name and acronym.
So without further ado let me reveal to you the newest
members of our personal defensive weaponry range…

[Curtains open, revealing two guns]

G1: …the "Photonic Energy Weapon"…
…and the "Ballistic Action Neutralizing Gun"

[Scene shows two Greys in a shootout using the new guns]