Bidwell's Big Plan
|Bidwell's Big Plan|
|Comic Strip Info|
|Released:||September 30, 2010|
|Number of pages:||6|
If you're like me, you'll want to skip directly to page six, where I jump out of a building and sock it to some hippies. Why? I don't know. And I never will. That's a Mann Co. Comics Promise.
— Saxton Hale
Bidwell's Big Plan is a comic that was released on September 30, 2010 Patch. It was created to go with the Mann-Conomy Update, and explained the idea of selling community made items. Bidwell's Big Plan follows Saxton Hale being kicked out of a plane after a "dramatic confrontation with (his) nemesis and former mentor, Charles Darling".
The comic is notable for building on the character of Saxton Hale, giving Saxton a nemesis, and introducing the idea of the Mann Co. Store. It is also the first instance of a character invoking the mysterious Her.
The comic begins with Saxton Hale hanging from the edge of a jet, confronting his former hunting mentor, Charles Darling. Darling has been capturing endangered animals as trophies to keep "behind bars" (inside his zoos), something which conflicts with Hale's philosophy of punching the most dangerous animals until he loses his watch. Darling dramatically kicks Hale off the edge of the plane. During his fall, Hale directs the reader to page 6 of the comic, which cuts to the fights, since the pages in between that have his assistants blathering about a new way to buy hats.
Hale's plan of using an endangered eagle to glide safely to the ground fails as his weight also causes the eagle to plummet, sending them both through the skylight of his office at Mann Co. where Bidwell awaits him. Bidwell explains that customers are unhappy with their current selection of Mann Co. products and are beginning to create their own. This enrages Hale, and he sets out to kill all the customers before being stopped by Bidwell. Bidwell proposes that they allow these custom items to be sold through Mann Co. while the creators receive a percentage of the profit. Hale, who is at first wary of the idea, is distracted by the scent of hippies and jumps out of a window to battle a mob protesting in the parking lot of Mann Co. Headquarters.
Pages (no text)
- Page 1
- This is the first published mention of Her, generally implied to be the Administrator, the woman who supposedly enticed Saxton Hale away from his animal-fighting romance with Mags to run his father’s company, Mann Co..
- Page 3 & 5
- Here, it is established that Saxton Hale's trophies are deadly predators that he has punched to death; which contrasts with the types of animals that Charles Darling collected and the way he displays them (see A Cold Day in Hell, page 7).
- Page 4
- "Cheaply made, unsafe products that catch on fire!" (See A Visual History, page 3.)
- Page 1
- The animals Darling has collected in his airplane for his zoo are either (almost) extinct or endangered, except for the pygmy rabbit, the closest relative to the cottontail rabbit.
- These animals are cited by Charles Darwin in his exploration of his theory of evolution.
- The obviously non-pygmy cottontail and long ears would be recognized by most 1960s Americans, with the Tasmanian and Tweety bird cage, as reference to the Warner Bros. Cartoon characters.
- Page 2
- "Sock It To Me" was a catch phrase of 1968.
- Page 5
- Hippies were a minority subculture within the young adults of the United States in the 1960s and ‘70s. They were particularly noted for protesting the Vietnam War, nominally under the noble cause of anti-violence.
- Hippies burned Patchouli oil incense to disguise (unsuccessfully) the smell of marijuana smoke.
- Hippies were also stereotypically associated with moral exemption, protest signs, and avoidance of work (hence, soft hands).
- Page 6
- Hippies are introduced as pacifist protesters of the Military-industrial complex, represented by Mann Co. and Saxton Hale personally:
- "Stop selling to mercenaries" "No more guns" Hippies historically organized protest actions against weapons manufactures supplying the Vietnam War.
- "Mann Co? Hell no!" Hippies chanted "Hell no!" specifically to encourage draft dodging.
- "Put a shirt on" Ironically, going shirtless (both sexes) was a form of hippie protest.
- Bidwell's Big Plan on teamfortress.com