Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

Nogg: This is the bridge of the I.A. Star Banger. As you can see, you are now in outer-space.
Dustin: A spaceship in space. You aliens are just full of surprises, aren't you?

Spacetrawler is a science fiction webcomic by Christopher Baldwin, maker of Bruno and Little Dee.

Six humans from six continents get knocked out and abducted by a fish-like alien named Nogg. When they wake up aboard his ship, Nogg explains that he's shanghaied them into Interplanet Amity--a galactic activist group aiming to end the exploitation of the Eebs. It won't be easy: the Eebs are the only species capable of understanding and building the technology on which the entire galaxy depends, so attempting to liberate them will quite literally tick off every single government in the Galactic Organizational Body.

In spite of the odds, five of the humans agree to fight the good fight for their own reasons... and the sixth sort of tags along anyway.

Hilarity Ensues. As does some darker stuff.

You should start at the beginning.

Tropes used in Spacetrawler include:
  • Acquired Poison Immunity: Dmitri is convinced that he can condition himself to be stun gun resistant... by repeatedly shooting himself with a stun gun. It works.
  • Alien Non-Interference Clause: The undoing of Nogg's Plan A. If the humans claim Earth's seat at the G.O.B., then Earth is no longer protected by the non-interference clause.
  • Always Need What You Gave Up: Yuri's therapist robot erases her memory of torture at Flineous's hand in order to bring her back to sanity. Not long afterwards, she runs into Flineous again, so the therapist is forced to restore Yuri's memories, causing her to revert to her scary, violent self.
  • Anti-Advice: Dustin thoroughly establishes himself as a dumbass, so when he tries to warn Pierrot against trusting Curn, it convinces Pierrot to do exactly the opposite.

Pierrot: Dusty thinks it's a bad idea, it must be sensible.

  • Anticlimax: Kuu-Drahc is played up as a major antagonist and personal rival to Emily, culminating in the Combat by Champion scene described below. A random rockslide crushes Kuu-Drahc before the fight even begins. Even Emily is disappointed by this.
  • Action Girl: Emily is one from the get-go, while Yuri and Martina evolve into the role.
  • And I Must Scream: How Spacetrawlers are made.
  • Animal-Eared Headband: Yuri wears one, initially.
  • Animal Wrongs Group: Pierrot borders on a one-man version of this.
  • Apocalypse How: Planetary Extinction: The unclamped Eebs melt the surface of planet Carpsellon to slag.
  • Arm Cannon: Emily has one of the arm-mounted wrist blaster types.
  • Artificial Limbs: Yuri now has six four of them.
  • Asshole Victim: [1]
  • Badass Longcoat: Emily. She even wears it over her spacesuit.
    • It even can turn into a hang glider, when necessary.
  • Berserk Button: Don't hurt animals around Pierrot. Don't talk about hurting animals near Pierrot. And don't try to force Pierrot to eat meat.
  • Beware the Nice Ones:
    • Yuri seems sweet, but if you tick her off, she will mess you up. Just ask Flineous.
    • Martina is morally conflicted about killing, even in self-defense--but she's not afraid to stun-gun her own captain to insure that No One Gets Left Behind. And, when backed into a corner, she is willing to kill if it's the only way to save more lives.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Pierrot does this, capping it with a Big Damn Kiss. And it is EPIC.
  • Bio Augmentation: In addition to having her limbs replaced with bionics, Yuri has a cat-like alien's ears and Eeb brain tissue grafted to her. The latter of which allows her to use telekinesis and understand Eeb technology.
  • Bishonen Line: Yuri's cyborg upgrades cause her to look increasingly inhuman--then her most powerful, "A God Am I" upgrade returns her to humanoid form, just with different skin color.
  • Black Box: Eeb-derived technology is this to non-Eebs, almost without exception. Even if another species could understand the tech, the Eebs are terrible at explaining it, and everyone else just relies on Eeb slave labor rather than bothering to learn how anything works. And in the specific case of spacetrawlers, the G.O.B. goes to great lengths to hide the truth of their construction and functioning, because this information is very politically volatile.
  • Blown Across the Room: Here, Pierrot is spacewalking and the recoil from a handgun sends him flying. In the comments below, Baldwin admits that he sacrificed realism for humor on that count.
  • Boldly Coming: Dmitri.

Dmitri: [regarding a bug-alien he slept with] Pheromones and ventral revealing outfits. Way hot.

Nogg: He's kind of like a mascot, but can lift things.

Flineous: Wait a second. How is that sporting ?
Yuri: It's not. I lied.

  • I'm Standing Right Here: King, here.
  • Intelligent Gerbil
  • Interspecies Romance:
    • Shuar genuinely loves Dmitri; Dmitri doesn't care.
    • Dmitri loves Dal, and she might reciprocate, but she's more committed to the G.O.B.
    • Curn and Oohlooh.
  • It Tastes Like Feet: Dmitri points out that the coffee tastes like asteroids. After all, it was synthesized from space debris.
  • Just a Machine: The robots themselves admit as much.
  • Klingons Love Shakespeare: Dmitri licenses his recipe for Russian tea cookies. It becomes wildly popular on multiple planets, and Dmitri makes a fortune.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Mr. Zorilla calls out Nogg for the way his narrative jumps between plot threads willy-nilly, and for the gratuitous cliffhangers.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: It's a relatively trivial procedure to erase (or restore) memories. The subterranean Mihrrgoots make liberal use of this to prevent the outside universe from learning of their existence. And the therapy-bot (who used to be a bar-bot) speeds up Yuri's counseling by erasing her traumatic memories.
  • Latex Space Suit
  • Laughing Mad: Yuri, with her psychotic persona.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Qwahntoo is the real brains behind the GOB, and Kuu-Drahc, the apex speaker is just the public face. Amusingly, in his first appearance Qwahntoo is literally standing behind Kuu-Drahc.
  • Military Mashup Machine: The Purfin M-32, coolest all-terrain boat-jet ever.
  • Moment Killer: Pierrot manages to do it to himself, by taking a break from smooching with Emily to apologize for the love triangle that he just ended.
  • Mood Dissonance: The style is a colorful, classic "space-adventure"-look, but the world and events are rather darker.
  • Mood Whiplash: Frequently.
  • More Teeth Than the Osmond Family: The Mihrrgoots.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: The humans mostly feel this way. Nogg thinks this attitude will get them all killed.
  • Note to Self:: Pierrot finds out some important information about the Eebs just before he's scheduled to receive some Laser-Guided Amnesia, so he writes himself a letter summarizing it. Post-amnesia, he reads the letter and almost immediately dismisses it.
  • No Transhumanism Allowed: Cyborg prosthesis is treated as normal, though not apparently common. But when Choan asks Yuri about her bioaugmentation, Nogg's indignant response suggests that bioaugmentation isn't well-regarded by some folks.
  • Oh Crap: Panel eight, here. Somewhat literal, in this case.

Eeb: As an example of our power, we will rain down fire on the nearby planet of Carpsellon and melt every last thing on the surface to slag simply by using our minds. From the information we now have, this "rain of fire" will be analogous to one's morning poo after enjoying a really satisfying spicy meal.
Everyone on the planet's surface: O.O

Dustin: Long live the Australian federal constitutional monarchy under a parliamentary democracy!

  • Planet of Hats:
    • The Eebs are a species of telekinetic gadgeteers with zero willpower. [4]
    • The Flimboulxians (i.e. Krep's species) artificially bred stupidity out of themselves. This had a side effect of making them all jerks.
    • The Tornites all have terrible fashion sense.
    • It's implied that the Bollycks are all violent and ill-tempered.
    • Qiyemps are all pacifists, to the extent of being completely spineless.
  • Playful Hacker: Yuri.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: How spacetrawlers work, and the real reason why details on their construction are so carefully guarded.
  • Power Strain Blackout: Eebs (or humans like Yuri with Eeb brain implants) will black out if they strain their telekinesis by moving objects that are too massive. Too much of this strain can outright kill them. It's later revealed that this limitation is a result of brain-clamping—we've yet to see an upper limit on how much matter an unclamped Eeb can move telekinetically.
  • Press-Ganged: Nogg's recruitment drive.
  • Psychic Powers: Eebs have telekinesis (as does Yuri after having one's brain tissue implanted), though they pass out and risk dying.

"Plus it's boring."

  1. The Eebs. Back when they had free will, they were violent and capricious; their own laziness was all that kept them from oppressing other planets.
  2. He's that nameless guy standing behind Kuu-Drahc at G.O.B. meetings.
  3. The Eebs invented the brain clamp technology, and they were the ones who started using it on themselves. By the time the rest of the galaxy decided to enslave them, only a half-dozen of them remained unclamped.
  4. Eventually justified--Eebs are artificially brain-clamped at birth, which completely destroys their willpower.