Okay! So it turns out the whole "you've always smelled peculiar" thing was just an office joke, engineered by Storm Boy. And I had unknowingly turned the tables on them by showing up with Ox's musk still in full effect. Haw! Storm Boy was gonna tell me right away, but I sort of didn't let him. (When I told him to shut his goddamn pie hole. Er, oops.) At any rate, things are cool between Storm Boy and me now. I've even arranged a date for him, with this Bismollian Bear I know. Former child actor, named Darzil Hek. Maybe you've heard of him! But probably not, because he never got any starring roles. Alright, enough of this jabber. Let's hop back into the story of "The Perfect Fighting Machine!"
FREEZCH! The sound effect that dares you to pronounce it!
But of course, this isn't a sound effect at all. It's a cleverly-hidden political statement.
A forgotten scandal of the 1970's involved the Carter Administration's secret arrest and imprisonment of 5th Dimensional imps. The feds worried that an America that was already suffering from "stagflation" might be further destabilized by wish-granting djinns, leprechauns, and fairy princesses. By the closing months of 1977, a steady stream of imps was flowing into the government's containment facility (Lamport Detention Center, called "the Lamp" by its prisoners). This spurred the formation of a resistance group: the Multi-dimensional Imp Liberation Force, or MILF for short. MILF's efforts started with a simple letter-writing campaign, but soon escalated to spectacular acts of tomfoolery, such as levitating the Pentagon, the replacement of several thousand gallons of "regular coffee" with Folger's Crystals, and the production of the movie version of "Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." The FBI raided the imps' main hideout -- the Haunted Shack at Knott's Berry Farm -- and the ensuing showdown ended with the deaths of nearly all involved. Most of the imps were reasoned out of existence, using the controversial (yet amazing) Randi Method. The FBI agents were, nearly to a man, either tickled to death, or inflicted with critical pie-to-the-face injuries. At the end of the day, a lone lawman staggered out of that house of death, dragging with him a single imp. The prisoner's name was Zch.
In-depth coverage of the case by Rolling Stone and the Village Voice turned Zch's plight into a cause celebre. Vanessa Redgrave funded and narrated a documentary about him. Country Joe and the Fish announced plans to record an entire album dedicated to Zch, but music producers declined to work with them, on the grounds that they actually sound pretty crappy once the acid wears off. It's rumored that Jim Henson attempted to smuggle Zch out of his cell, by concealing the imp within his own beard. And, of course, Denny O'Neil mischievously wrote the message "Free Zch" into an issue of Detective Comics. (O'Neil hadn't counted on Don Newton's overwrought panel compositions requiring the "hidden" message to be broken back down into its component words.)
By 1979, however, the world had forgotten about Zch. Other than a few retro-vintage Gap t-shirts and a brief mention on VH1's "I Love the '70s", Zch has disappeared from the national zeitgeist. But Zch is still here. Not in our hearts, perhaps, but in a soundproofed cell somewhere in the Mojave desert.