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1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:11 am UTC
by glasnt
Image

Alt: [shouted, from the field] 'Aunt Beast hit a pop fly to second! Dive for it, Mrs Whatsit!'


Abbott and Costello and Doctor Who jokes <3

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:13 am UTC
by rhomboidal
A Wrinkle in Time Lords.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:23 am UTC
by Magnanimous
Took me about ten seconds, but I laughed.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:33 am UTC
by Poohblah
ok, pretty confident this is a "Doctor Who" reference, but somebody please enlighten me as to the joke/pun, because I really don't understand it... :?:

edit: ok, I see abbott and costello has been mentioned (I've not seen much of their movies/skits), and so has "a wrinkle in time"... now I'm even more lost.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:34 am UTC
by dzamie
Song plays right field. Well, I didn't hear anything from A&C saying that someone else was playing there!
Jenny and Madame Vastra, of course, are batting for the other team. :wink:



Poohblah wrote:ok, pretty confident this is a "Doctor Who" reference, but somebody please enlighten me as to the joke/pun, because I really don't understand it... :?:

In Doctor Who, there's a running gag where someone introduces him as the Doctor, and someone else invariably replies with "Doctor who?" to which the response (usually by the Doctor) is "no, just the Doctor."
It also references Abbot and Costello's Who's on First skit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_gSWTQKE-0

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:38 am UTC
by ETACM
Any chance someone could explain the mouseover? I must be missing some references...

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:39 am UTC
by Poohblah
dzamie wrote:Song plays right field. Well, I didn't hear anything from A&C saying that someone else was playing there!
Jenny and Madame Vastra, of course, are batting for the other team. :wink:



Poohblah wrote:ok, pretty confident this is a "Doctor Who" reference, but somebody please enlighten me as to the joke/pun, because I really don't understand it... :?:

In Doctor Who, there's a running gag where someone introduces him as the Doctor, and someone else invariably replies with "Doctor who?" to which the response (usually by the Doctor) is "no, just the Doctor."
It also references Abbot and Costello's Who's on First skit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_gSWTQKE-0

Yes, I'm aware of that Doctor who joke, and.... OH!! THAT skit! I've seen it before!! NOW I understand! Thanks you :)

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:59 am UTC
by Euler
I just wanted to pop in and say that the title text is a reference to 'A wrinkle in Time' my Madeleine L'Engle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Wrinkle_in_Time

I couldn't exactly call it a normal book.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 5:14 am UTC
by Antior
dzamie wrote:In Doctor Who, there's a running gag where someone introduces him as the Doctor, and someone else invariably replies with "Doctor who?" to which the response (usually by the Doctor) is "no, just the Doctor."


Silence will fall when the question is asked...

Also, referring to The Doctor (character) as "Doctor Who" is about the same level of ignorance as mixing up Vulcans and Klingons.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 5:31 am UTC
by lassehp
Goodness! I didn't get the joke. Just didn't. Started reading the comments, saw Abbot and Costello mentioned. Hm, no - not getting it. Then my memory (which apparantly has a high latency) kicked up the right association (maybe that was the problem - I'm usually left associative), and I burst into laughter-o-loudly.

/Lasse

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 5:56 am UTC
by netcrusher88
Euler wrote:I just wanted to pop in and say that the title text is a reference to 'A wrinkle in Time' my Madeleine L'Engle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Wrinkle_in_Time

I couldn't exactly call it a normal book.

In retrospect I think I may have liked A Wrinkle in Time for much of the same reason I enjoy Stephenson novels. Geeky babble.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 6:29 am UTC
by Icalasari
Aaaaand I'm watching Doctor Who reviews

Is this a Get Out Of My Head Randall moment?

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 6:46 am UTC
by willpellmn
Took a moment for this one to dawn on me, but I was amused. (Yes this exactly the same thing Magnanimous already said; doesn't make it wrong.)

Also, to finish clearing up any confusion among readers even less knowledgeable than I - the reason A Wrinkle in Time is being referenced in the alt-text is that it contains a character named "Mrs. Who" (a compatriot of Mrs. Whatsit).

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 6:51 am UTC
by Arky
I got the Abbott and Costello ref (after about 10 seconds of thinking "eh? What's the joke? This is a scene which happens ALL THE TIME in the show") but I didn't get A Wrinkle In Time even though I've read the book. Albeit I read the book probably 16 or 17 years ago so my memory of it is not that great.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 6:52 am UTC
by Arancaytar
I got the Who's On First joke and the Doctor Who reference, but I haven't read A Wrinkle In Time.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:52 am UTC
by m_dow
Incidentally, it's also a point of pedantic significance that Randall didn't put a period after the "Mrs" in "Mrs Whatsit." L'Engle left it off for the three supernatural beings, although some rogue copy-editors slipped it back in (at least, in a couple editions).

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:53 am UTC
by Wooloomooloo
Hmmm, is Randall meta-trolling? A continuation of http://xkcd.com/891/? "If you get this, you're... just too old"? Although to be honest, that doesn't include the alt-text (no idea about that, haven't read that book).

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:16 am UTC
by A42
I made an account here just to say, EEEEEEEEEE, Randall referenced A Wrinkle In Time!

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:31 am UTC
by mooncow
m_dow wrote:Incidentally, it's also a point of pedantic significance that Randall didn't put a period after the "Mrs" in "Mrs Whatsit."


It's a point a pedantic significance that "Mrs" is correctly written without a period. The period indicates omitted letters, and is correctly used for shortenings like "Rev.", "Gen.", "Pres.", etc. Titles like "Dr", "Mr", "Mrs" have letters omitted from the middle, not from the end, so "Mrs" is quite correct, although people do often write it as "Mrs." without logic, especially Americans.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:36 am UTC
by Klear
mooncow wrote:
m_dow wrote:Incidentally, it's also a point of pedantic significance that Randall didn't put a period after the "Mrs" in "Mrs Whatsit."


It's a point a pedantic significance that "Mrs" is correctly written without a period. The period indicates omitted letters, and is correctly used for shortenings like "Rev.", "Gen.", "Pres.", etc. Titles like "Dr", "Mr", "Mrs" have letters omitted from the middle, not from the end, so "Mrs" is quite correct, although people do often write it as "Mrs." without logic, especially Americans.


Thanks for this. I'm trying to know British English rather than american, so it's always nice to become aware of another difference. Not long ago, I was quite surprised that the correct British form is "aeroplane".

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:56 am UTC
by orthogon
This reminds me of the whole "Hu is the president of China" routine that the Now Show did after the last-but-one Politburo reshuffle. The Prime Minister was Wen Jiabao, which doubled the comedic potential. ("The Chinese Prime Minister is coming to visit." "When?" "Yes" etc).

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:20 am UTC
by Mo6eB
Ok, I read every comment here and then hit "A Wrinkle in Time"'s wikipedia page. Let me see if I understand right:

There's this show called "Doctor Who", in which the main character is called The Doctor, leading to people asking "doctor who?" and being told "No, just 'The Doctor'". It's a fine show.
There's also this comedy duo called Abbot&Costello, who have a sketch called "Who's on first" about a reporter and baseball coach constantly misunderstanding each other, because the player on first base (whatever the heck that is) has the nickname "Who". The sketch is mildly amusing.
There's also a book called "A Wrinkle in Time" in which several aliens pose as humans, adopting the names "Mrs Who", "Mrs Which" and "Mrs Whatsit". The book sounds awesome.

And the joke is...?

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:24 am UTC
by Klear
Mo6eB wrote:Ok, I read every comment here and then hit "A Wrinkle in Time"'s wikipedia page. Let me see if I understand right:

There's this show called "Doctor Who", in which the main character is called The Doctor, leading to people asking "doctor who?" and being told "No, just 'The Doctor'". It's a fine show.
There's also this comedy duo called Abbot&Costello, who have a sketch called "Who's on first" about a reporter and baseball coach constantly misunderstanding each other, because the player on first base (whatever the heck that is) has the nickname "Who". The sketch is mildly amusing.
There's also a book called "A Wrinkle in Time" in which several aliens pose as humans, adopting the names "Mrs Who", "Mrs Which" and "Mrs Whatsit". The book sounds awesome.

And the joke is...?


The joke is that the reason why the baseball player from the A&C sketch is called "Who" is because he's The Doctor. Edit: And every time you'll see the sketch from now on, you won't be able to get the idea that they are talking about The Doctor out of your head.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:16 am UTC
by BAReFOOt
Klear wrote:The joke is that the reason why the baseball player from the A&C sketch is called "Who" is because he's The Doctor. Edit: And every time you'll see the sketch from now on, you won't be able to get the idea that they are talking about The Doctor out of your head.


But that’s nonsense, since nobody ever calls him “Doctor Who". That’s like calling Link "Zelda", or Master Chief "Halo". In other words:

Doctor Who is a pretty cool guy. Eh fights the Daleks and doesn't afraid of anything.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:24 am UTC
by hetas
ETACM wrote:Any chance someone could explain the mouseover? I must be missing some references...

Watch some Monty Python. Mixed with Abbot and Costello.

EDIT: Or at least that's what I first thought when reading Aunt Beast And Mrs. Whatsit. Maybe it was just an coincidence.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 12:56 pm UTC
by VectorZero
Robot Chicken did this years ago.

netcrusher88 wrote:In retrospect I think I may have liked A Wrinkle in Time for much of the same reason I enjoy Stephenson novels. Geeky babble.
That's good enough for me!

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:16 pm UTC
by xpatiate
I thought I got the Doctor Who bit, I was completely and utterly stumped by the whole baseball thing, but I was SO EXCITED by the Wrinkle in Time reference! It's one of the handful of well-loved books I've kept from childhood, and flipping through it now I see all kinds of things that have stuck with me, without my realising where they came from. Truly a magical book, not just for the planet-hopping story or the insights into maths and physics, but the wonderful characters (human and otherwise) - in particular the dorky, emotional, brilliant but clueless but ultimately heroic Meg. Inspiration for nerdy girls everywhere.

Also I would love to see Aunt Beast hit a pop fly (whatever that is).

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:47 pm UTC
by LarrySDonald
For the first time from 1 to 1220, I simply didn't get what the hell the joke was. Figured it was about Dr Who, failed to associate with Abbot and Costello until the comments.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:03 pm UTC
by Pez Dispens3r
Klear wrote:
mooncow wrote:
It's a point a pedantic significance that "Mrs" is correctly written without a period. The period indicates omitted letters, and is correctly used for shortenings like "Rev.", "Gen.", "Pres.", etc. Titles like "Dr", "Mr", "Mrs" have letters omitted from the middle, not from the end, so "Mrs" is quite correct, although people do often write it as "Mrs." without logic, especially Americans.


Thanks for this. I'm trying to know British English rather than american, so it's always nice to become aware of another difference. Not long ago, I was quite surprised that the correct British form is "aeroplane".

Don't take mooncow too seriously. They're quoting the convention from Fowler's Modern English Usage (1926) which doesn't agree with other style guides, British or otherwise, on that point. There is nothing more or less correct about using periods after titles, and nothing particular regional about it either. (The logical editors of the Economist, for example, would let Rev stand without a period, and many careful British writers have made a point of giving Mr. a period.) The key really is consistency, which is why so many editors got out their pens for Wrinkle in Time, because many of these distinctions are arbitrary and it's only important that you pick one and stick with it! (Unless of course you're L'Engle and you have a reason not to.)

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:27 pm UTC
by Klear
Pez Dispens3r wrote:
Klear wrote:
mooncow wrote:
It's a point a pedantic significance that "Mrs" is correctly written without a period. The period indicates omitted letters, and is correctly used for shortenings like "Rev.", "Gen.", "Pres.", etc. Titles like "Dr", "Mr", "Mrs" have letters omitted from the middle, not from the end, so "Mrs" is quite correct, although people do often write it as "Mrs." without logic, especially Americans.


Thanks for this. I'm trying to know British English rather than american, so it's always nice to become aware of another difference. Not long ago, I was quite surprised that the correct British form is "aeroplane".

Don't take mooncow too seriously. They're quoting the convention from Fowler's Modern English Usage (1926) which doesn't agree with other style guides, British or otherwise, on that point. There is nothing more or less correct about using periods after titles, and nothing particular regional about it either. (The logical editors of the Economist, for example, would let Rev stand without a period, and many careful British writers have made a point of giving Mr. a period.) The key really is consistency, which is why so many editors got out their pens for Wrinkle in Time, because many of these distinctions are arbitrary and it's only important that you pick one and stick with it! (Unless of course you're L'Engle and you have a reason not to.)


Wikipedia seems to agree though. And anyway, it makes sense to write it without the period.

Also, I worked as an editor, I know consistency is important.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:36 pm UTC
by Calica
Antior wrote:Also, referring to The Doctor (character) as "Doctor Who" is about the same level of ignorance as mixing up Vulcans and Klingons.

And yet, I do this all the time out of habit, despite knowing better :oops:

Edit: referring to The Doctor as Who, I mean. Vulcans and Klingons are clearly nothing alike.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:41 pm UTC
by Schrottrocker
Perfect comic to make anybody outside GB and USA feel totally left out. When I'm grown up I'm going to create a comic that attracts an even bigger fanbase than Randall's, then I'll write an episode that refers to a) 5 different sketches/tv shows/novels that are all well known in my country but completely obscure in the rest of the world, b) puns that are entirely lost in translation and c) some kind of sports that everybody in my country loves but nobody else outside has a clue about.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:48 pm UTC
by orthogon
Calica wrote:
Antior wrote:Also, referring to The Doctor (character) as "Doctor Who" is about the same level of ignorance as mixing up Vulcans and Klingons.

And yet, I do this all the time out of habit, despite knowing better :oops:

Edit: referring to The Doctor as Who, I mean. Vulcans and Klingons are clearly nothing alike.

I didn't know any better. I guess I'm one of today's lucky 10,000. However, if this is correct (which I suppose I have to accept), why is the programme called "Doctor Who" and not "Doctor Who?"?

Also, estimation problem: how many Dr Hus are there in the world? (or in China, I guess it's approximately the same).

EDIT: I had underpunctuated my allegation of underpunctuation.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:40 pm UTC
by goofy
mooncow wrote:It's a point a pedantic significance that "Mrs" is correctly written without a period. The period indicates omitted letters, and is correctly used for shortenings like "Rev.", "Gen.", "Pres.", etc. Titles like "Dr", "Mr", "Mrs" have letters omitted from the middle, not from the end, so "Mrs" is quite correct, although people do often write it as "Mrs." without logic, especially Americans.


This is not true. There are plenty of British citations in the OED for Dr. and Mrs. with the period. The idea that the period is only used when letters are omitted from the end seems completely made up. It might be a standard in some style guides, but it's certainly not the only correct way.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:50 pm UTC
by blowfishhootie
mooncow wrote:people do often write it as "Mrs." without logic, especially Americans.


You seem to be confusing you being too stubborn/clueless to understand something with that same something not being logical. Here's the logic: In American English, almost any single word (as opposed to an acronym) that is abbreviated will get a period on the end. I want to say any instead of "almost any," but I'm sure there's some example to the contrary, because language is a complex beast that can't be summed up in any practical number of single-sentence rules.

And the only question that actually matters in language is this: Did you understand the point being communicated? Great, then the language use was logical.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:00 pm UTC
by O-Deka-K
orthogon wrote:I didn't know any better. I guess I'm one of today's lucky 10,000. However, if this is correct (which I suppose I have to accept), why is the programme called "Doctor Who" and not "Doctor Who?"?

Already mentioned, but since you also mentioned "lucky 10,000", I'll explain. Whenever someone meets The Doctor for the first time, the conversation usually goes something like this:

A: ...and this is The Doctor.
B: Doctor? Doctor who?
The Doctor: No, it's just "The Doctor".

It's a running gag.

Also, it's not that NOBODY calls The Doctor "Doctor Who". It's that a lot of people incorrectly call him "Doctor Who" (because that's what the show is called). That's the joke. "[Doctor] Who's on first?" "No, he's just The Doctor".

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:07 pm UTC
by goofy
The Doctor has been called "Doctor Who" on screen once. In The War Machines, the computer WOTAN says "Doctor Who is required. Bring him here." He was also called "Dr. Who" in the early comics.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:11 pm UTC
by orthogon
O-Deka-K wrote:
orthogon wrote:I didn't know any better. I guess I'm one of today's lucky 10,000. However, if this is correct (which I suppose I have to accept), why is the programme called "Doctor Who" and not "Doctor Who?"?

Already mentioned, but since you also mentioned "lucky 10,000", I'll explain. Whenever someone meets The Doctor for the first time, the conversation usually goes something like this:

A: ...and this is The Doctor.
B: Doctor? Doctor who?
The Doctor: No, it's just "The Doctor".


Thanks, but I think my question might have been obscured rather than clarified by the punctuation. My point was that the programme should be called "Doctor Who?", not "Doctor Who". Without the question mark it strongly implies that "Dr Who" is the protagonist's name. Then again I will count myself as doubly, triply or quadruply lucky if somebody now points out that Dr Strangelove, Dr Zhivago and/or Dr Jekyll are not the characters' real names.

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:23 pm UTC
by Angelastic
Abbot and Costello have a sketch about baseball, eh? No wonder Costello often gets confused with Joe Jackson, the baseball player cum pop star. ;)

Re: 1221: "Nomenclature"

Posted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:24 pm UTC
by O-Deka-K
orthogon wrote:Thanks, but I think my question might have been obscured rather than clarified by the punctuation. My point was that the programme should be called "Doctor Who?", not "Doctor Who". Without the question mark it strongly implies that "Dr Who" is the protagonist's name. Then again I will count myself as doubly, triply or quadruply lucky if somebody now points out that Dr Strangelove, Dr Zhivago and/or Dr Jekyll are not the characters' real names.

Sorry, I missed the last bit of your question.

The answer is...
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Who knows?