This Just In
ISSUE #20 MAY 2, 2002

Clone Wars, Episode VI: Return of the Zed Guy
by Zeke

Hello... I want... to welcome back our readers. We've been gone a long time. Over a month since This Just In was captured by elite forces sent by President Cl-- er, Commodore Zuke. Over six months since the clone began working on his evil plans. Many of us and our associates at other newspapers were imprisoned, interrogated, even killed. Most were just poked with sticks, but they were very pointy sticks.

Anyway, all that changed last month. At 7:45 PM, Eastern Standard Time, a multi-planetary force led by ships loyal to a free Five-Minute Voyager engaged Zuke's forces directly. The incoming forces disabled or destroyed their opposition, then prevented further destruction by taking out the planetary defense grid, whose lethal power was being turned toward Earth. The government is still working to compile the names of those injured or killed on either side of the battle, and to find out what planetary defense grid this reporter is talking about.

If you have family members who may have been involved, you can request information from a special commline, but we'll probably say no. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those injured on both sides, for we are equally sons and daughters of Earth -- except Zuke and his forces, who were just jerks and should be kicked down the stairs repeatedly. In the coming months, we must continue to remember that, if we are to heal and move on.

What's that? Yes, you in the back... you have a question? All right, let's hear it.

HEY! Just because it took us a month to actually announce all this doesn't mean we didn't care about telling the public what happened. There was a lot of work to be done. You know, rebuilding work. Re-assembling the TJI building, hiring temps to replace the injured, working out that whole matter of unpaid hostage time... we were busy, okay? So be quiet and mind your own business. And if you do have photographic proof that we were just playing solitaire all month, please think of the environment and recycle it.

Ahem. Anyway, after removing the computer "worm" that had been used to control our systems, we at This Just In were able to recover this transcript of the final battle between Zeke and Zuke....

[Recording begins 03 April 2002, 15:53 EST]
ZekeOkay, Zuke, joke's over. I'm taking the site back.
ZukeThe hell you are!
ZekeNo, seriously. It's not April Fool's Day anymore. People are going to start asking questions.
ZukeApril Fool's Day? You think THAT's what this is about? It's no joke, you simpleton! I've commandeered your site and I'm not giving it back! And furtherm-- hey, wait a sec. How did you get out of the dungeon?
ZekeDungeon? I was sick. Just a normal, run-of-the-mill flu virus. I'd have shut you down yesterday if I'd been healthy.
ZukeI distinctly remember locking you in the dungeon!
ZekeIn my dungeon, genius. You think I didn't have a secret escape route?
ZukeI'm going to have a word with my henchmen. A long word starting with "fo" and ending with "ols." But face it, Zeke -- your time is up. It doesn't matter that you've escaped the dungeon. What's to stop me from locking you up again?
ZekeHow is "fools" a long word?
ZukeStop changing the subject!
ZekeFair enough. Anyway, the point is that I've regained control of the site, so you no longer have power over me. Your day in the sun is over.
ZukeRegained control? Ha! It's still Six-Minute Voyager and you can't do anything about it!
ZekeThen care to explain the fact that the title of the page has switched back to Five-Minute Voyager?
ZukeWhat are you talking about? Here, see for yourself. The title is still HOLY CRAP!
ZukeGRRRR! I don't know how you did that, but it'll be undone shortly. You can be sure of that much.
ZekeOh, please. Get used to it, Zuke -- your "worm" doesn't work anymore. The worm has turned.
Zuke::: THWAM :::
ZekeI admit I deserved that. Hey, wait a sec... was that my Hammer of Smiting?
ZukeUm... no?
ZekeGive it back, Zuke.
ZukeNo! It's MY Hammer of Smiting now! See? I engraved my name on it!
ZekePost-It Notes don't count as engraving. Give back my Hammer before I have to hurt you.
ZukeAll right, take it. I can't get it to work right anyway.
ZekeYou're probably putting too much weight into it. Show me your swing.
ZukeOkay. Stand back for a second....
::: WHOOOSH :::
ZekeSee? There's your problem. Way too much weight. All you have to do is ease off a bit and let the hammer do more of the work for you.
ZukeThanks, I'll keep that mind. And -- HEY! I said to stop changing the subject!
ZekeAll right, back to the subject then. If I recall correctly, the subject was as follows: you suck, I don't, get out.
ZukeAnd what possible evidence do you have for this absurd claim?
ZekeOh, I dunno... maybe the fact that I finished changing the site back while we were having this delightful conversation?
ZukeYou what? Let me -- AAAAAAAAAAAAAA! My beautiful site! It's gone! All gone!
ZekeAnd thus endeth the reign of Zuke. Bwahahaha.
ZukeStop that! You may not laugh evilly! Only I may laugh evilly!
My site... all gone.... How did you do it, you dastardly fiend?
ZekeIt wasn't hard, really. I just asked myself what I would do if I wanted to take over my own site, and then I did the opposite.
ZukeIt was that easy? But I spent months devising my plan!
ZekeSure, Zuke. Sure. Now, are you going to get out of here, or do I have to call in the Spanish Inquisition?
ZukeHuh? I didn't expect the Spanish Inquisition.
The Spanish InquisitionNOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition!
ZukeWow, Zeke. What a brilliant and unpredictable piece of humour. See, this is exactly why I took over.
ZekeOh, like you're Mr. Original yourself.
ZukeOh yeah? When have I been unoriginal?
ZekeGee, I dunno -- how about your choice of name?
Zuke"Zuke" isn't a copy of your name, it's a parody. You of all people should know the difference.
ZekeAnd the "Commodore"?
ZukeYou don't use it anymore!
ZekeDoesn't mean you can just take it. I rest my case.
ZukeBite me! This is far from over. I'll devise another worm... use my knowledge to blackmail your allies....
ZekeOh, just give it up.
ZekeZuke... I am your father.
It's not true! It's impossible!
ZekeSearch your feelings, Zuke. You know it to be true. Join me, and together we can rule the galaxy as father and son!
ZukeHey, that sounds cool. Sure.
ZekeYou know full well I didn't mean that last part.
ZukeThen why'd you say it?
ZekeIt's just a mood thing, you know? I had to finish the quote. James Earl Jones is the man.
ZukeYou're pathetic.
ZekeThen why are you the one on your knees?
ZukeWill you cut that out?
ZekeLook, you're the one who keeps feeding me lines! Anyway, I'm not kidding. I want you out of my site.
ZukeVery well, my progenitor... you've won this round. But only this round. I shall return, and when I do, you'll wish you'd never lived to see my revenge!
ZekeWhat is it with you and corny, cliché-ridden dialogue?
ZukeI hear it's hereditary.
Zeke(sigh) Walked right into that one. Okay, pal, you've had your fun. Get outta here.
ZukeWe shall meet again, Zeke. WE SHALL MEET AGAIN....

Various parties have commented on the Zuke takeover and the ensuing battle.

"My God, are you two done?" asked reader Celeste. "Zeke, I think you have way too much time on your hands. Either that or you've been drinking too much caffeine."

On Zeke's "worm has turned" comment, fan FatMatDuhRat observed, "Actually... that statement kinda makes a little bit of sense if you look at it from a crooked angle."

"Holy crap, Zeke," said guest writer Kira, "I think you've finally gone round the bend. Developed multiple personality disorder, have we?" She added that, if Zeke spent this much time typing e-mails, "everyone would be a lot happier around here."

"By 'everyone,' you mean yourself, right?" countered mysterious commentor ariK.

"Ahem. Yes," admitted Kira. "But who asked you?"

Reader Draknek declined to comment, but mentioned that he would save the transcript for potential blackmail.

The Simon Inquisition appeared long enough to shout "NO ONE EXPECTS THE SIMON INQUISITION!" They promptly vanished without a trace.

Commodore Zuke has gone back into hiding; all attempts to find and exterminate him like the rat he is have failed. As for this reporter, he will be satisfied with the knowledge that "that reporter"'s reign of terror has ended, making it possible for his own reign of terror to safely return. He advises all readers to learn the correct lesson from this saga of folly, betrayal, and folly: that even in these trying times, good will always triumph over bad parodies of good. Or that good will briefly lose to the bad parodies of good and then come back and defeat them. Either moral is acceptable.


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Copyright 2002, Colin Hayman. A product of This Just Inc. All rights reserved. This notice does not worship Commodore Zuke or, for that matter, Zeke. It worships Lexa Doig. WORSHIP, SCUM!