In the course of my research for this week's Geek in Review, I came across one of the most awesomely demented things you will ever see in your life: a comic book, handed out by Radio Shack in the 80s called Whiz Kids. It was essentially an advertisement for their Tandy computers, featuring dialog like:
Shanna: The RS-232 lets you communicate with information services like Compuserve, over the telephones, Alec. You can get information about lots of things . . . like and electronic encyclopedia . . . even news articles from some newspapers!
Alec: Wow! That's something else! Hey - do you think you can show us how color scripsit works, Shanna?
Most of the issues I looked at are little more than comic book as infomercial, but they are wonderfully corny. Many manage to combine the mid-80s computer craze with various morality lessons that are eerily close to Chick Tracts, like The Computer that Said No To Drugs and A Deadly Choice, which teach kids and parents that drug dealers play pool and have tattoos, good kids really like Archie and Jughead, and the best way to handle the drug problem is to Just Say No . . . and stay nice and safe in your upper middle class home with a Tandy color computer, featuring color disk drive, a DWP-210 daisy wheel printer and DC-1 modem.