Solution: HOMESTAR RUNNER
These are all garbled quotes from the Strong Bad E-mails portion of www.homestarrunner.com. (Two of the lines in the flavortext are quotes from this site and were also part of my GL signature line at the time.) Each quote has had a single word removed, and then had all of its remaining words alphabetized, just like the Jester’s punch line. The key to this puzzle was to determine the missing words.
The rearranged and completed quotes were:
1. The other way is to take a really cool word, but then spell it all wrong. (#16, band names)
2. For behold! The Three Eighty Six! A spectacle of graphics and sound! (#41, invisibility)
3. Because you don’t want to end up with a cold none. (#39, property of ones)
4. But I do have a pretty sweet duck pond simulator for my computer. (#14, duck pond)
5. Get your certificate in: Cheesing People Off, Indian Giving, Cutting Ones, Doing Some Other Things, Home Invasion, Cracking Wise, World Domination, Sending Me a Dollar, Total Spaceship Guy, TV/VCR repair, or get your degree! (#26, CGNU)
6. Play? Know! Best football results twice again. (#43, little questions)
7. The ones are always cold, and the parties last all night. (#32, flag day)
8. Now you’ve got me all cheesed off! I’m gonna play some Temple of Apshai. (#4, homestar hair)
9. I mean, in the time it took me to say your name, I coulda done all kinds of stuff. (#9, i love you)
10. And at some point get the guy with kinda long hair and blues to whip out his acoustic guitar and play everybody some white blues. (#49, theme party)
11. Your computer has too much computer in it, and not enough typewriter. (#34, weird dream)
12. Gee, Mark, if you’re really from England, shouldn’t you have some kind of unnecessary vowel at the end of your name? (#22, sb_email 22)
13. Or at least some snooty independent record store. (#53, comic)
14. That looks really good, coming out of the back of his neck there. (#58, dragon)
15. Do you don’t not dislike not Strong Bad? (#59, marzipan)
16. Okay, there’s some hairs that seem to be stuck in the duct tape here. Was that on purpose? (#30, 12:00)
17. I mean, I bet it’ll make people wanna run faster because of how good it is. (#67, autobiography)
18. The Cheat! Some town here can’t understand you. Say something normal, like… Douglas. (#55, cheat talk)
19. That right there will get you five to ten extra-credit points easy. (#64, english paper)
20. Everything is fine. Nothing is ruined. (#50, 50 emails)
When the quotes are rearranged in chronological order (as hinted by the fact that word “time” was missing in the flavortext), the first letters of the missing words spell out “ANSWER HOMESTAR RUNNER.”
This was the first MAS Hunt puzzle I designed. At the time, I wasn’t even sure if I was going to do the Hunt, but the fact that I actually had a completed puzzle finally convinced me.
The mechanics of this puzzle are based on (read: ripped off of) the MIT Hunt puzzle “A Disturbing Universe.” All I did was substitute Strong Bad quotes in place of Treehouse of Horror quotes.
Thanks once again to Tahnan for allowing me to cause his brain to melt (as he put it) because of this puzzle. And thanks to the Brothers Chaps, the comic geniuses behind Homestar et al., for creating the second-best site on the Web.