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  1.  (5677.41)
    2. come to that, how are they desalinating the water in the first place?

    Magic.

    3. Wouldn't it make more sense to burn the hydrogen in a modified internal combustion engine to run a conventional generator? Fuel cells are fussy and heavy and generally require Platinum-group metal catalysts and/or operating temperatures of several hundred degrees.

    MIT disagree.
  2.  (5677.42)
    @Kosmopolit: The idea is to have nothing in the water to start with except hydrogen and oxygen. Using saltwater gives you a lot more unwanted byproducts (the worst being chlorine gas) and a lot less H and O2.

    @warrenellis: Doesn't have to be magic. If KK and Caz can design and build things like the steam cannons, a decent reverse-osmosis distilling plant is well within their capabilities. (And in fact would be one of the first requirements for the steam cannons, KK's bike and anything else steam-driven to work with any reliability - not to mention providing potable water for Whitechapel.)
  3.  (5677.43)
    @warrenellis: Doesn't have to be magic.

    I was being...


    ...oh, I give up
  4.  (5677.44)
    @warrenellis: Sorry, guv. The coffee lit off the techie parts of the brain before the language centers today. (I know it ain't magic - but I've heard that answer more than once to an engineering question elsewhere, and it invariably translated to "Haven't worked that bit out yet.") No offense meant.
    • CommentAuthorDee_Noir
    • CommentTimeApr 27th 2009
     (5677.45)
    I'm having a time out until I can learn some manners.
    If Freakangels is based on The Midwich Cuckoos then one must consider that the central premise of the novel is under what circumstance would it not only be possible, but necessary, even heroic, it murder a group of 58 children? I agree with the literary historian Adam Roberts when he argues that the Midwich Cuckoos calls out to be read as an early example of holocaust fiction. The camps were that place in the war where a people had systemised the murder of children (along with women and men) on the grounds of defending civilisation and the human race against a menace from within. In one sense the novel is an attempt to enter imaginatively (via SF fable) into the mindset of a people who could commit such an act.

    Within the world of the novel, the Russians have destroyed one population of such children in one of their own towns by invoking the extreme step of obliterating the entire town by 'atomic cannon'. The Russian government, Wescott reports, 'calls upon all governments everywhere to ''neutralize'' any such known groups with the least possible delay'. Another character, Leebody, insists that killing them is not murder, since 'they have the look of genus homo, but not the nature'. Zellaby sums up, just before his suicide bombing: 'it is our duty to our race and culture to liquidate the Children' or 'their culture... will extinguish ours.' These queasily evasive euphemisms ('liquidate' 'neutralize') are painfully familiar. Moreover, Wyndham's description of the children seem almost egregiously Semetic: they all share 'browned complexions', 'dark golden hair' and 'straight narrow noses', and they carry the sense of 'foreignness' about them.

    The momentum of the novel exists, we might say, in order to barrel us along the line of reasoning and emotional force, until we reach the same place that the Nazis occupied: these children must be killed to protect our race. This is not in the least to suggest the the humane, considerate Wyndham was a Nazi; indeed, something the reverse. His novel is a brilliantly contrary ethical cipher: it interprellates us as a camp guard: 'here, you must not only kill these children' (or not kill, but liquidate, neutralise) 'but believe that you are still doing good'. Wyndham's satire on the western ideology of 'civilisation' and 'race' still has a contempory bite and resonance in these modern times. It's a catastrophe, but certainly not a cosy one.
    • CommentAuthorKosmopolit
    • CommentTimeApr 27th 2009
     (5677.46)
    "Golden hair" and "straight narrow noses" are Semitic now?
  5.  (5677.47)
    @Dee
    :) I see what you're saying about Midwich Cuckoos, although I think you're stretching for traction with the holocaust references... I'm of the opinion that Midwich Cuckoos steers clear of deliberate allegory of that kind. I'm not sure what your point about Freakangels is though?
  6.  (5677.48)
    I'm just looking forward to the idea of the radio transmitter possibly opening up the world somewhat.

    Another lovely episode with one of my favourite Ellis 'tropes' of throwing information at the reader while still making it interesting and funny and not feel like I'm reading a block out of a textbook.

    How long is it until Friday?
    •  
      CommentAuthorthenewscum
    • CommentTimeApr 29th 2009
     (5677.49)
    Is it friday yet? agh..

    goodnight Whitechapel.
    •  
      CommentAuthorphorgan1
    • CommentTimeApr 30th 2009
     (5677.50)
    Almost time for it to begin again:) My week has been great. I love KK, Carolyn is cool, I like her combination of genius and insecurity--did you notice in the first two panels how the hole in the wall shifted an unbelievable amount in relationship to the ladder? A different perspective couldn't explain that shift!;)? A plain evaporative still will make distilled water, (and booze). I like the way that Alice is the one that makes Kirk more human, teases him, ongoing thing about the ascenders. He tries to be a dick to keep people off, and with all the previous helpers on lookout it worked--he drove them away. I'm guessing Alice had big brothers so she doesn't take him a seriously:) We know the least about Mark, but don't we know his last name? Mark Fox. Do we know anyone else's last name? I like the hint from Carolyn about them not being the most popular before the flood, lets us know that they were together/or considered a group, and well known? Someday the back-story to the flood will come out, dammit! Technically, a volt meter won't tell you a fuel cell is putting out electricity, just that there's a potential for it. Put a load on it and see if there's still EMF! And tomorrow it continues:) YEA!!!!!!!
    •  
      CommentAuthorjohnjones
    • CommentTimeApr 30th 2009
     (5677.51)
    @ phorgan

    We know KK's whole name: Kolfinnia Kokokoho Titching. We also know that KK will try to stab anyone attempting to use it to mock her. Or possibly even just saying it aloud.
  7.  (5677.52)
    Hey, this is the first Friday where I'm waiting for the next episode - when do they usually upload it? :)
  8.  (5677.53)
    We also know Alice's last name as you see her ID and papers blowing about in the wind when she's stunned by the cannister. I forget what it was though.
    •  
      CommentAuthorrazrangel
    • CommentTimeMay 1st 2009
     (5677.54)
    I believe up time is noon GMT. Add or subtract hours as necessary for your time zone.
  9.  (5677.55)
    Thanks, am in London so that's fine!

    Phorgan1 - yes, it's Alice Shona Mahoney - see episode 2.
    • CommentAuthornexus594
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2009
     (5677.56)
    Hi all,

    FA Newbie here. Just finished reading all FA webcomics in two sittings within the last 12 hours.

    When I finished ep 53 and notice 6 and saw the empty block that eventually will read "Episode 54" - I thought "Shit, NOOO! Not already?!"

    I've read Ellis' costumed superheroes stuff and his Fell detective series from Image. Still, I was surprised how this webcomic hooked me, but deep.

    Help me make it through to the next episode?

    - another laid-off Noo Yawker