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Ch-ch-ch-changes
Order of the Stick comic
OOTS0177
Comic no. 177
Date published 3 May 2005
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"Leaping Lizards" "The Early Bird Catches the Wizard"
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Vaarsuvius has just been hexed. Some team members take it nicely and respectfully. Others, not so much.

Cast Edit

Transcript Edit

Panel 1

Haley: Vaarsuvius! What happened??
Vaarsuvius: Well, either I just decided to spontaneously get in touch with my reptilian side, or I was the target of a Baleful Polymorph.
Belkar: Hey, the hexes are fading.

Panel 2

Elan: Hey, it's making little lizardy noises.
Vaarsuvius: "Noises"? I am speaking Common, and with more skill than anyone using the word "lizardy".

Panel 3

Elan: What do you think it's trying to tell us?
Vaarsuvius: I am trying to tell you to improve your vocabulary, you ignorant fool! Have you been struck deaf???

Panel 4

Roy: All I hear are hisses and clicks.
Haley: Are we sure this is V?
Vaarsuvius: By the ancient elven hosts! They cannot understand my speech! Not even the feeble rudimentary level of understanding I would expect from the halfling.

Panel 5

Vaarsuvius: Clearly, while I was able to retain my mental faculties, the vocal cords of my new form are incapable of making proper speech. This leaves me unable to communicate verbaly at all.

Panel 6

Vaarsuvius: However, a quick spell should disperse any doubts as to my identity!
Vaarsuvius: Magic Missile!

Panel 7

Nothing happens.

Panel 8

Roy (off-panel): What's it doing?
Haley (off-panel): I don't know, but it's so cute!
Vaarsuvius: Curses and blasphemies! My lizard claws are incapable of performing the delicate hand positions required for spellcasting, and my voice cannot speak the words of power!

Panel 9

Roy: We'll need to take it with us. If it IS Vaarsuvius, we'll need to cancel the magic ASAP.
Durkon: Aye, and I did na ask Thor fer Dispel Magic today.

Panel 10

Roy: Well, if you can understand us, V, we're going to march for a bit, then make camp. Durkon will try to dispel the magic then, OK?
Vaarsuvius: Fine! The sooner I can be free of this accursed... curse... the better off I will be.

Panel 11

Belkar picks Vaarsuvius up by the tail.
Vaarsuvius: What the—unhand me!

Panel 12

Belkar: Huh.
Belkar: You know, if I knew more about reptilian reproductive anatomy, I'm sure this would answer a lot of questions.
Vaarsuvius: My vengeance shall be prolonged, diminutive cretin.

D&D Context Edit

  • Baleful Polymorph is a spell that transforms a character into a small animal.
  • In the first panel, Belkar is likely referring to the fact that grid maps are only pulled out for combat encounters.
  • Magic Missile is a 1st-level Wizard spell that deals damage.
  • In the second panel V refers to the "Common Tongue", the basic language of the D&D world.
  • Dispel Magic is a 3rd-level Cleric spell that can remove magical effects.

Trivia Edit

  • The title refers to the David Bowie song Changes from his 1971 album Hunky Dory.
  • This is probably the first time a character directly explores the issue of Vaarsuvius' gender (unless you count Bathroom Humor, in which V enters neither the male nor female washroom on account of a "far more efficient" metabolism).

External Links Edit

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