|“Don't Get MAD”|
|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||11 May 2011|
|View the comic|
The Roy-Thog duel continues. Roy tries to come up with a way to use his superior Int in the fight, but in the meantime, Thog remains perfectly content to rely on Str.
- Panel 1
Roy: Wait—where did Haley and the others go?
Thog: haw haw haw haw!
- Panel 2
Roy: Damn it, it's Nale, isn't it? This is another crazy ambush scenario.
Thog: huh? thog not know, thog not see nale in long gime.
Thog: thog just thinking of funny joke thog learned from guards.
Roy swings his sword at Thog but Thog dodges the blow.
- Panel 3
Thog: what's black and white and read all over?
Roy: A newspaper.
Thog: a zebrafolk who talks back! haw haw haw haw!
Thog strikes Roy with his great axe, harmlessly hitting his pauldrons with a "clang!"
- Panel 4
A scene of a distraught zebrafolk covered in red welts from the lashes of the two guards standing over him.
- Panel 5
Thog: 'nuff comedy. thog now crush talky-man! thog unstoppable, like sink with broken drain.
Roy: That would be unstopperable, you idiot.
Thog: thog that, too.
Thog connects with a strike to Roy's abdomen.
- Panel 6
Roy: I don't care how strong you are, thug.
Thog: thog's name is thog.
Roy: I didn't misspeak.
Roy slashes Thog's face with his sword.
- Panel 7
Roy: You're all brawn, no brains, while I have both.
Thog: oh no! does talky-man have prestige class that lets him add intelligence bonus to attacks?
- Panel 8
Roy: Uh, no, but—
Thog: damage rolls?
Thog: armor class? saving throws?
Roy: No, but that's not the point!
- Panel 9
Thog: then how talky-man use intelligence in fight with thog?
Roy: I don't know yet, OK?! I'll figure something out, that's sort of the whole point.
Roy charges Thog, but Thog sidesteps.
- Panel 10
Thog: thog think thog smarter than talky-man anyway.
Roy: Are you serious??
Thog: sure. thog already knows how to use best ability score in a fight.
- Panel 11
Thog Leap Attacks Roy and lands a crushing blow to his head, bringing him to the ground.
- Panel 12
Thog: thog elegant in thog's simplicity.
Roy: On the plus side, I think I have less brain cells to worry about.
D&D Context Edit
- The title is a play on the acronym MAD, which stands for Multiple Ability Dependency. MAD is a balance problem present for character classes which rely on more than one ability score for their class features, for example, Monks and Paladins. Thog is not MAD, because all of his class features depend on Strength. Roy is not explicitly MAD either, being a fighter just like Thog, but he is attempting to outsmart his opponent, which makes him MAD in this case. Had he picked up a prestige class or feat like Thog had thought, that would make him MAD as well, because then he would be using Intelligence for attack rolls.
- Roy and Thog are discussing the game mechanics of the combat they are engaged in, with regard to what abilities Roy can use to modify his attack and damage rolls, armor class, and saving throws: the statistics that go into whether an attack hits or misses and how much damage is done. It's all very meta.
- Zebrafolk are a non-standard humanoid race the trunk of a man but the lower legs and head of a zebra, similar to the standard race of lizardfolk. Any animalfolk race can be constructed this way in D&D.
- The title is a pun on an advertising slogan for The Glad Products Company, makers of plastic bags: "Don't get mad! Get Glad."
- The title could also be a pun on the cold-war acronym, Mutually Assured Destruction, based on the even match in this fight.