As one of the four elements that science has determined make up our entire universe, "fire" may in fact be the most destructive, and yet, vital for our modern civilization and its furnaces, internal combustion engines, and cigarette addictions. The prospect of accidental fires occuring anywhere and everywhere is frightening, and even more so when you throw children into the mix, who simply must paw everything with their grubby, jam-smeared mitts. How best to teach our youngsters that the world is a veritable tinderbox waiting to explode into deadly, disfiguring flame? Well, guess what, it involves comic books.
Yes, it's Sparky, the fire dog, who walks on two legs and wears the heavy protective equipment of your friendly neighborhood fireman. In fact I think Sparky here is just a human being with the head of a dog. Possibly the result of a forbidden scientific experiment, or maybe a curse from a particularly vindictive Zeus. Watch as he battles gasoline, matches, and fireworks!
Sparky patrols the downtown core in his fire truck - yes, Sparky is a dog that can drive and has a Class A license, allowing him to cruise around, obsessively musing about fire and how it can start anywhere, at any time, for any reason.
Occasionally Sparky will just wander into private homes, move furniture around, unplug stuff, and take matches away from babies. I say let the kid burn the place down. It's called "baby proofing", parents, Look into it next time.
But around the corner a gang of students are preparing to rebel against the system and burn their homework! Down with teachers! We don't need no education! No, wait, they're just going to burn Brian's homework, which ironically was a book report on "Fahrenheit 451."
"Yes, we know we have matches next to lots of paper and stuff, and we know it could start a fire. Starting a fire is, in fact, exactly what we're doing here, with our matches and paper and squealing about burning things and all. Get with it, Cindy!"
ah, the old "grab a wad of matches and light them all at once" trick. Sure, you might burn your fingers, but it's worth it as the beautiful flames burst forth and your entire being is enraptured by the cleansing light of fire, washing over... sorry. I get a little out of control when it comes to fire. I should probably see somebody about that.
Suddenly the mighty foot - yes, dogs have feet and wear boots- the mighty foot of Sparky crushes the matches. Never EVER use any matches or lighters near anything that might catch on fire! Which begs the question, if you can't use matches or lighters near things that might catch on fire, then what the hell are matches and lighters used for? Other than holding in the air while you holler "Freebird!" at the rock concert?
Meanwhile, across town, more fire-related disaster looms!
Oh yeah, it's time to start the charcoal grill, and that means the holy combination of highly flammable liquid, fire, and people that should probably be trusted with neither.
Man, every time you want to, you know, throw gasoline on a fire and perhaps make an amazing fireball that people will talk about for years to come, there's family members - perhaps disabled family members - throwing shade on your gasoline-throwing ideas. Nobody's any fun any more, especially after Bobby here was crippled, in that fire.
Every time kids want to do something cool, like burn homework or potentially destroy their homes, Sparky arrives to be a total bringdown! Danger, disgurement and death are bad things, sure, but what about boredom? What about that, Sparky? But that's a problem Sparky can't solve, and soon he's off on patrol again.
Across town some children are playing with fire! And not literally playing with literal fire, even though that's something this comic book could probably get away with depicting, but it's kids and matches and a big bag of fireworks, which, when I was growing up, was like THE GREATEST COMBINATION EVER. I wonder how Sparky is going to completely ruin THIS childhood funtime?
For once Sparky's super fire dog powers are not fast enough to stop the miracle of combustion and the speed of cheap firecrackers!
EVERYONE GET DOWN! SIX FIRECRACKERS JUST WENT OFF AND IT'S REALLY DANGEROUS SO YOU SHOULD ALL TAKE COVER BECAUSE BY THE TIME YOU'VE BEEN WARNED TO GET ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ALLEY AND GET DOWN THE FIRECRACKERS HAVE ALL EXPLODED WITH LITTLE POPS AND NOTHING IS LEFT BUT THE SMELL OF POWDER AND LITTLE BITS OF PAPER FLUTTERING IN THE AIR, A POIGNANT REMINDER OF THE EPHEMERAL NATURE OF PLEASURE, AND INDEED, OF ALL HUMAN EXISTENCE!
Also, I like where the kid says "Wow, I didn't think they would do that!" This is a kid that didn't know firecrackers would explode. What exactly did he think firecrackers do?
Sparky promises to dispose of those fireworks properly - during Sparky's big July 4 beer bash at Sparky's place on the lake. He usually gets a keg and they spend the night getting hammered and shooting bottle rockets at each other. It's awesome.
But fun and potentially illegal fireworks aren't the only fire-related dangers lurking in Anytown, as we'll see!
I'll be the first to admit that taking the batteries out of smoke detectors is a really stupid idea. I will also be the first to admit that I, along with most people, have done exactly this. Sometimes you HAVE TO HAVE that 9-volt battery, fire protection be damned!
I dunno what's worse, having your house actually catch on fire, or being ordered around by your kid brother in his bright green Garanimals.
That's right Sparky, pose with the kids and smile and take all the credit for saving the day. Meanwhile, the actual fireman, the one who actually put out the actual fire that threatened life and property, is left to stand in the background, wondering why this dopey dog-face man gets all the glory. So remember the fire safety rules kids, which are, basically, sit quietly in your room until an adult comes to set things on fire for you. The end.
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