On page 206, the term “ass monkey” is a fitting #MonkeyReference.
Jack Kirby's Lord of Light concept art—repurposed for the Argo cover story in 1979—was recently published for the first time by Heavy Metal magazine. [Barry Geller very kindly signed this copy for me.]
On page 207, Nicholas Young’s remarks about Lilith are culled from midrashic literature. Lilith wasn’t technically a single mom but Adam’s first wife prior to Eve, made of the same clay as he was. The couple quarreled and split over whether she should be equal or subservient to Adam. Her children were not human but demons (hence Nicholas refers to them as having “massive birth defects”). The idea of Adam being a “deadbeat dad” who dumped her and started a new family with a younger model (i.e., Eve) struck me as an amusing way of telling Lilith’s side of things. Nicholas calls him a “dirt bag” because in Hebrew, אדמה, adamah (from which comes “Adam”) means clay, red earth, or soil. His “no sense of right and wrong” refers to God’s prohibition in Genesis 2–3 against eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil in the Garden of Eden.
On page 208, Nicholas Young’s comment that “I can only influence the weak-minded” alludes to the scene in Star Wars where Ben Kenobi tells Luke that “The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.”
On page 208, Bruiser’s outburst “I like Quasimodo!” is a pop culture twofer. In the classic holiday movie A Christmas Story (1983), a determined Ralphie waits in line to meet Santa Claus and has no little patience for the weird kid in line who remarks, “I like the Tin Man.” He is known only as “Kid with Goggles” in the credits.
For the same reasons that this non sequitur is so hilarious and endearing, so did the Internet take a shine in 2007 to the Zombie Kid Who Likes Turtles. Not only did the video go viral, but it also spawned its own meme.