Smelt it, dealt it, etc.

   This is a departure from the typical format, and also much sloppier. My drawing hand and my drawing brain won't cooperate to improve the linework, much less add color. They hope to be back in better form tomorrow.
   As for the subject, some explanation is in order: after a reader correctly predicted yesterday's comic a day in advance, I asked whether they knew what I'd post today and if so, whether they'd mind telling me. Their answer: "a clever multi-point deconstruction of the statistical assumptions posed by the Fermi Paradox, all implied allegorically by a pun about farts". Pretty close, huh?
   For best results, please imagine a very gaseous nebula revealed in panel 3's zoom out.
Panel 1 of 3: A large telescope on a mountain. A speech bubble comes from inside: "A whole universe out there—" Panel 2 of 3: inside the telescope facility, two astronomers are seen working. One replies to the first panel: "—and so you're saying, what, you'd think we'd've smelt it by now—" and the other, who spoke in the first panel, says, "—if there was someone to have dealt it. Yeah." Panel 3 of 3: back to the exterior shot, but zoomed out. The conversation continues: "Well, perhaps they have some kind of stealth tech. Some kind of 'great filter'." / "Seems more likely that every species just hits a point where it dutch ovens itself to death." END


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