space program

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Pretender of the galaxy

Strong Bad Email #138

We learn of Strongbadia's space program: SBASAF.

Cast (in order of appearance): Strong Bad, The Cheat, Strong Mad, Homestar Runner, The King of Town, Coach Z (Easter Egg)

Places: Computer Room, Strongbadia, The Classroom (Easter Egg)

Computer: Lappy 486

Date: November 14, 2005

Running Time: 3:44



STRONG BAD: {singing} Email is the sound that we make when a young girl cries...

{Strong Bad says "Da-da-da-da" before "Dear Strongbad", "Good jokes" instead of "Doo doo crap," and says "NC" as "Not cool."}

STRONG BAD: {typing} Who doesn't have a space program these days? I mean, don't, like, the Italians have a space program? Ours is called SBASAF {pronounced "space-aff"}. The Strong Badian Administration of Some Aluminum Foil. {clears screen} The only problem is, ...

{fade to white, Strong Bad continues talking over}

STRONG BAD: ...we blew our whole budget on this kick-awesome logo...

{as he says this, the SBASAF logo appears - a rocket's path tracing the second S, and ending up in position as the first A}

STRONG BAD: ...and on our orientation filmstrip.

{Cut to a slide of the SBASAF logo, with "2005 Strong Badian Administration of Some Aluminum Foil" at the bottom. The slide is initially out of focus, but becomes focused partway through the voiceover.}

VOICEOVER: SBASAF is a definitely-for-profit organization, dedicated to the manned taping of aluminum foil to cardboard. {beep sound}

{Another slide comes up - a stylized drawing of alien mountains in outer space, with a moon and a comet in the sky. A ten and five dollar note are visible, and a large arrow pointing beyond the mountains. The ten dollar bill has the text "TEN O' DEMS" along the top, the earth in the president's place and a circled "SB" for the seal. The five dollar bill is mostly obscured, but a sun and planet are visible on it.}

VOICEOVER: Our mission objective: to accompany 15 earth dollars on a round trip journey {beep} ...

{another slide, a drawing of a spaceship flying past a planet}

VOICEOVER: ... to the closest reaches of space. {beep}

{another slide, two astronauts, one lying on a bench with weights, the other saying "Gimme ONE more!!"}

VOICEOVER: While the muscular crew will age only a few hours, the cargo, according to our {beep} ...

{another slide, a portrait of Albert Einstein, saying "Hiya!"}

VOICEOVER: ... vague understanding of the theory of relativity, will have aged to an incredible {beep}} ...

{another slide, of three large gold bars in space, with the caption "THREE O' DEMS"}

VOICEOVER: ... one million dollars. And who is good enough at video games {no beep}...

{another slide, a photo of a TV screen with a joystick in front of it. On the screen is a typical 2-D one-on-one fighting game with "FIGHT!!!" written on it. The combatants are a hamburger and a ghost. The ghost has only 1/3 health.}

VOICEOVER: ... to accept such a dangerous mission? Why, none other than beef boullion-aire joyboy {beep} ...

{another slide, of Strong Bad wearing a headband with small wings on it, with pants made out of foil}

VOICEOVER: ... Space Captainface. First Lieuteneral Captainface knows the true key to success is {no beep} ...

{another slide, of a girl smiling at the camera, with a polka-dot background}

VOICEOVER: ... to have as many hot 60's-looking girls in your filmstrips as possible. {no beep}

{another slide, two more girls, and a blue background}

VOICEOVER: Yeah, girls. Alright. {beep}

{another slide, The Cheat wearing a blue cap and sunglasses, with the caption Harold "Strap" Coopmore}

VOICEOVER: Hey, look! It's onboard mechanic Harold "Strap" Coopmore! Looks like he could use a grilled cheese sandwich. {no beep}

{another slide, a photo of a grilled cheese sandwich, with the caption Item 3b: "Grilled Cheese" some music plays for a little bit, then a record-scratching noise and another slide, two men with flat-top haircuts and headsets in front of a computer terminal}

VOICEOVER: Flat-tops and shirt sleeves are the order of the day at SBASAF mission control. Why, Flight Engineer Ted Averill! You aren't smoking a smooth relaxing cigarette at all! {beep}

{another slide, the same scene, but the man on the left is smoking}

VOICEOVER: That's better. And somebody get that man a high-ball. {beep}

{another slide, rows of spaceships}

VOICEOVER: The flagship of SBASAF's 30-vessel fleet is the Proud Anselmo. {no beep}

{another slide, Strong Bad in the same outfit, atop a spaceship labelled "PROUD ANSELMO". There is a halo light shining on Strong Bad.}

VOICEOVER: A wonder of modern SBASAF-ery, the Proud Anselmo is constructed almost entirely out of cardboardium alloy. When blastoff day finally arrives, {no beep} ...

{another slide, the 60's girls in silhouette, with a large question mark}

VOICEOVER: ... will you be among the hot 60's-looking girls to wish strappin' Space Captainface a safe voyage? And if not {beep} ...

{another slide, a sad dog, with the caption "How Come?"}


{Cut to Strong Badia. A close-up of Strong Bad wearing his Space Captainface costume in what appears to be a cardboard box holding an Atari joystick. He and the box are trembling violently.}

STRONG BAD: Argrgrgrgrgrgr! Got to...escape...Earth's...tenacity... Fire the afterburners, Strap!

{Look behind Strong Bad to see The Cheat is also in a cardboard box, with a CD player. A toilet paper tube is duct taped to the side of the box. We can now see Strong Mad's hand shaking the boxes.}

THE CHEAT: {strained The Cheat noises}

{The Cheat presses play on the CD Player, which plays a sci-fi flyby sound effect. Cut back to Strong Bad. The box lifts into the air temporarily and lands on the ground.}

STRONG BAD: Oh... we made it. {the boxes continue shaking} Ahem. Oh, we made it. {the boxes stop shaking}


STRONG BAD: According to my calculations {pronounced like "cal-cuh-lations"}, our precious cargo should have already multiplied to about 50 bucks!

{Strong Mad walks away behind the fence}

THE CHEAT: {Holding up a CD labelled "SOUND F/X (not sounds from that movie F/X)"} {The Cheat noises}

STRONG BAD: Oh, right. We spent the precious cargo on that sound effect CD. Well, let me hear "Body falling down stairs".

THE CHEAT: {agreeable-sounding The Cheat noises} {presses button on CD player}

{The sound effect of what sounds like a body falling down a staircase plays. Strong Bad moves his head with each thump on a stair. Homestar Runner rushes up with a sweater stuck over his head.}

HOMESTAR RUNNER: You guys! You guys! I need help putting on this sweater!

STRONG BAD: A space mutant {stresses each syllable, like "myoo-tant"} from Satriani 5! Hit him with everything we got, Strap!

{The Cheat pushes various buttons, and random laser sounds and explosions are played. Then The Cheat throws the CD case at Homestar.}

HOMESTAR RUNNER: Aah! I knew I should have asked the Italian space program. {wanders off}

STRONG BAD: Nice work, The Strap. Another sucessful mission for {music starts, singing} Space Captainface!

{A piece of cardboard labelled SPACE CAPTAINFACE is lowered on a fishing hook above Strong Bad}

STRONG BAD: {still singing} Pretender of the galaxies! He's always having space cocktails with hot 60's-looking girls!

{Cut to wide shot, we see that The Cheat is holding a fishing rod with the SPACE CAPTAINFACE logo hanging from it.}

STRONG BAD: {still singing, kind of} Where are all the hot 60's-looking girls? {music stops}

THE KING OF TOWN: {enters} I'm im my 60's!

{The Paper comes down.}

Easter Eggs

  • At the end, click "S. CAPTAINFACE" to hear a log entry.
{Strong Bad is at the Lappy}
STRONG BAD: {typing} Captainface Log: The vinegar-baking soda drive on the Proud Anselmo has run out of fuel, stranding us in the Impellitteri Sector. There is shrapnel everywhere. It makes one wonder, does man truly {beep}
{The slide of Item 3b: "Grilled Cheese" comes into frame from the bottom, and stays a few seconds}
  • At the end, click the Tire to see Cadet Z at recruitment.
{The last two slides of the slideshow play again. Coach Z's arm enters frame from the bottom}
COACH Z: I was told I was gonna get to pee in a cup!
{Pull back to see Coach Z watching Strong Bad next to a projection screen}
STRONG BAD: In due time, Cadet Z. In due time.
COACH Z: Oh, doo time! Even better.
{Strong Bad looks slightly shocked}
  • At the end, click the CD to see the back cover
SOUND F/X are not a joke!
featuring such favorite hits as:
- baby in a wagon
- drippy towel
- single bird tweet
- the hush of winter
- baseball in repose
- body falling downstairs
- sonar ping
- creaking rustiness
- sonar pong
- rub sequence              00003 or 2
On the side of the case is the text Sound F/X (not sounds from that movie F/X).

Fun Facts


  • The beeps in the filmstrip are common when a presenter is given a set of slides and a tape - so the presenter knows when to change the slides. Also, some combined tape player/projector models advance automatically upon detecting the beep.
  • The "vague understanding of the theory of relativity" is a major misunderstanding of Special relativity, in particular the twins paradox.
  • A Sonar ping is a method used to determine distance from one object to another, like two submarines. One will send out a low level "ping" that travels at a set speed through water, "bounces" off the other submarine, and is re-recieved by the first's sonar system. The amount of time this takes determines the distance. There is no sonar pong.
  • Saying SBASAF is a definitly-for-profit organization is a reference to non-profit organizations.


  • The various things and text adorning Strong Bad's spaceship are from left to right:

Inside References


  • As of this cartoon's release, only the USA, Russia, and China have manned space programs. Italy is a member of the European Space Agency.
  • The fact that Homestar can't get his sweater on is ironic because his difficulty is with the sleeves and Homestar has no visible arms.
  • In the old-fashioned video game shown on the TV, the player on the left is titled "Hamburger" even though it has a large layer of cheese in it which would technically make it a cheeseburger.
  • The Tire wears a corded headset and is smoking a cigarrette. Thus it appears to be the only acting member of Mission Control.

Real-World References

  • The S. CAPTAINFACE log is similar to the ones that occur at the beginning of Star Trek episodes.
  • Strong Bad's reference to Homestar Runner as a mutant from Satriani 5 is most likely a reference to guitar virtuoso Joe Satriani.
  • The narrator's comments about shirt-sleeves and flattops being the order of the day is a good description of late '60s early '70s Mission Control.
  • "The Proud Anselmo" is named for Phil Anselmo.
  • Albert Einstein was a twentieth century theoretical physicist, most famous for his Theory of relativity.
  • F/X is a movie from 2001 starring Bryan Brown and Brian Dennehy. The movie is about a special effects technician who is hired by a government agency to help stage the assassination of a well-known gangster.
  • The joystick next to the TV is the standard Colecovision joypad, known as the "doorknob" due to the control stick's distinctive and somewhat uncomfortable shape.
  • Strong Bad's pronounciation of "mutant" is a refrence to the classic science-fiction film This Island Earth, where an alien "mut-ant" (one of a race of humanoid ants), figures in the climax.

External Links

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