December 10, 2004
Ok, if you haven't read Frank Herbert's "Dune" then today's strip will make no sense whatsoever.
In short: Melange, usually called "The Spice" has many uses. It tends to give people weird psychic powers. The most important of them is that if you eat a whole lot of it, you will eventually be able to navigate spaceships around. For some reason, space travel just doesn't work if you don't have a drug addict at the helm. Silly things like computers are no match for the computation power of a tripping human mind.
Melange comes from the planet Arrakis (and nowhere else). Arrakis is a shitty stink-hole of a desert planet, with several-hundred-foot-long worms swimming around in the sand. Turns out that Melange is worm-shit (Or, more accurately, nasty stuff that comes out of worms when they die). They call the planet Arrakis "Dune" because nobody in the whole genre ever has just one name for anything.
Oh, and if you take a lot of spice, your eyes turn blue. Like, really blue, all over.