That's the (relatively) new U.S. Grant Bridge (which connects Portsmouth, Ohio, with South Shore, Kentucky), there, looming on the right, and our friend and Sat Com 7 contributor Gerry Canavan wielding the placard in front of the daleks. Sorry I didn't ink the doodle. My fine-point Rapidograph is all gummed up, and I've got end-of-the-term business keeping me busy.
I'll let Mike explain Clowes's speech balloon.
—Oh, hey! Yeah, "Vee-ess" is a term borrowed from a boyhood semi-friend of my little brother. Said semi-friend was at our house one day brandishing a stick and leading a procession of small fry around the backyard. I asked him "What are you doing?" He answered, "We're gonna vee-ess the cat!"—that is, attack or oppose our cat, "vee-ess" being his way of pronouncing the abbreviation for versus. (Whether he knew that that's what "vee-ess" stood for, I'm not sure.)
Anyway, to our prompt, which looks like this:
To my eye, that doesn't look like a series of subtractions. For those initial hyphens to function as minus signs, they'd either need another space between them and the subtracted terms or no spaces at all, thus:dan clowes -canavan -daleks -ghostwriter -scooby -grantbridge
I'll grant that it's hard to be sure quite what was intended with that notation, however. It does make the non-Dan Clowes items look as if they have negative values, even if a subtraction formula doesn't seem quite right. Perhaps it represents a "dan clowes" standard robot to which attachments can be affixed à la Voltron, to create the "dan clowes-daleks" bot or the "dan clowes-scooby" bot, say, culminating in the grand agglomeration of the "dan clowes-canavan-daleks-ghostwriter-scooby-grantbridge" bot. And now that I think of it, that might have been amusing to illustrate. But that's not what I drew.dan clowes - canavan - daleks - ghostwriter - scooby - grantbridge
No, I figured the initial hyphens were a way for the Google searcher to indicate a sort of bullet-point list within the limits of the single-line search field available to him; and with that in mind, I just sought to produce a single drawing that incorporated all of those elements. So of course I produced the only really satisfying solution:
This is a swipe of Dan Clowes's Madman pinup, where I have substituted the name of Gerry Canavan for Madman where appropriate and unmasked the faces of his loyal blog followers. Like Isaac, I opted to read "Scooby" as "Scooby Doo" and fudged "ghostwriter" by reading it as "Ghost Rider." As for "grantbridge," seasoned travelers may recognize the background as a view of 16 Grantbridge Street, Islington, London N1. (See it for yourself on Google Maps street view!) I took the liberty of eliminating a large tree that would have cluttered the middle of the composition, but that's basically Grantbridge Street, right there.
But here's the skeleton key to the image: I found that Dan Clowes Madman pinup on a blog called, yes, Grantbridge Street and other misadventures, where "Dan Clowes" is one of the keyword tags. So there you have it: "dan clowes -canavan -daleks -ghostwriter -scooby -grantbridge." Possibly the most specific, yet most obscure, search term ever to lead a searcher to our site.