Tonight's Top Story

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The cover of Tonight's Top Story, the second Newshounds compilation by Thomas K. Dye.

Tonight's Top Story is the second compilation of comic strips of the webcomic Newshounds by Thomas K. Dye. The book covers the comics between 2 January 1999 and 30 March 2000, which introduced the characters Hal O'Peridol, Stormy Knight and Connor O'Connor. It was published by Plan Nine Publishing.

The book also has a special feature on how the characters Kevin and Stormy first met.

Notable Storylines[edit]

Vermin Nation (February 15-March 23 1999)[edit]

Ferris gets invited to a nightclub called Vermin Nation, where only rats are allowed to attend. However, it turns out to be a hoax, set up by a company performing illegal animal experiments. When he fails to turn up for work, Kevin and Renata try to find him.[1] At the medical institute, Ferris manages to escape, and Kevin and Renata manage to interview the head of institute. Afterwards, the institute turns to testing on other animals.[2]

The New Stadium (April 13-23 1999)[edit]

When a new football stadium is being built on a site of environmental and historical, Alistair ties himself to a tree to stop it, much to Sam's disgust. Despite threats by the football team to build the stadium even if he does not move, Alistair stays at his post, and does so until it stars to rain.[3]

Gun Deactivator (May 3-28 1999)[edit]

After the Columbine High School massacre, Alistair starts a new project. After keeping it secret for some time, he later reveals his work, a machine that will deactivate every gun in the world.[4] While everyone is being distracted by the release of The Phantom Menace, Alistair turns on the gun deactivator, and it works! However, when someone invents "The Portable Atomic Bomb Launcher," a product which would sell well if guns did not, Alistair tries to stop the gun deactivator before something even more deadly is released into the world.[5]

Black Tie Affair/Kevin in Wonderland/Here's Hal! (June 8-July 30 1999)[edit]

After a night out at a black tie affair with Ferris, Kevin feels unwell. After considering taking some of Lorna's stomach medicine, he changes his mind and decides to eat some grass from the lawn.[6] However, after doing so, he ends up hallucinating.[7] When he recovers, Wolfram and Renata try to uncover what lead to his hallucinations, and discover someone has being spraying the lawn with. After forcing the sprayer to watch Ferris's Baywatch videos (which knocks him out cold[8]) they discover he works for Sunflower Chemicals. They go to see the owner, Hal O'Peridol. Not only are they shocked to learn that he is a dog like them, but he also has a massive crush on Renata.[9] While Hal talks to Renata, his workers kidnap Wolfram and hold him over a tank of drain cleaner, and promises only to release him if Renata marries him. Renata says she will, and Hal goes to release Wolfram, only to discover that his workers held Wolfram over a tank of chocolate.[10] While he argues with his staff, Wolfram and Renata escape.

Son of Sam (August 31-October 15 1999)[edit]

Sam attends a baseball match, during which a man, who is an admirer of murderer David Berkowitz called "Billy Bob" Milosevic sits next to him. When the umpire makes a bad decision, Sam yells, "Kill the umpire!" When he does so, the man attempts to really kill the umpire, obeying Sam.[11] However, when the police arrive, they arrest Sam for provoking the crime. When he asks for a lawyer, Lorna cannot afford a proper lawyer, so she gets a member of staff to be one. Sam is horrified to discover however that it is Alistair.[12] Alistair tries his best, but "Billy Bob" has discovered God, and there are a lack of people not biased to form a jury for the trial. As the trial goes on, it quickly becomes a show trial, which the defence calling people with no relation to the case.[13] The trial eventually ends, finding Sam guilty, but it later turns out the verdict is misread.[14]

The Governor (November 8-19 1999)[edit]

After a local governor resigns due to a drug addiction, a new one is appointed. When Wolfram goes to interview him, he asks him a question, to which he reacts by throwing a podium at Wolfram.[15] This leads to a the start of a wave of podium throwing across the country,[16] but soon the fad ends.[17]

Stormy Weather (December 13-24 1999)[edit]

After a night spent watching Blackadder videos with his new girlfriend Stormy Knight, Kevin seems to be having a good relationship, but Stormy soon calls to tell him something.[18] Although the night went well, the next day Stormy tells him that she wants to go back to her old boyfriend Connor O'Connor.[19] After he is dumped, the staff at KPET try to use Christmas to distract him.[20]

Take Back the Canal (January 4-13 2000)[edit]

As Alistair lays asleep on the beach after his annual New Year's Eve tradition, he is awakened by two fish who ask for his help. They ask him to help protest about America giving the Panama Canal back to the Panamanians, but Alstiar points out that their plan to make a "Chain of fish" does not really work.[21]

Stormy Weather II (January 17-February 25 2000)[edit]

Kevin goes to a shopping mall with Ferris in order to help take his mind from his failed relationship with Stormy. Kevin and Ferris split up, and Kevin walks into a Starbucks, where he is served by Connor, Stormy's boyfriend.[22] While they are arguing over Stormy, Starbucks is invaded by an armed force from AOL Time Warner, who order Kevin to shoot Connor, but he backs out of it.[23] While the soldiers threaten to shoot Kevin, Connor manages to escape. The soldiers are about to fire, but just before they pull the trigger, they learn the operation was a failure in all the other branches of Starbucks that were invaded.[24] Afterwards, it appears that Kevin may have a loving relationship with Stormy again.

Van Plan (March 13-31 2000)[edit]

Lorna decides that KPET needs a News van, and thus sends Kevin, Renata, Wolfram and Sam to a dog driving school. Although their answers to the question are somewhat dubious [25] they manage to pass. When the van arrives (before their licenses), Renata, Sam and Wolfram go for a quick joyride, driving to KRVL to show off their new van. During their ride however, they hit a car in the KRVL parking lot. Lorna learns about the joyriding, she shows her disapproval, but later forgives them after she learns about what they did at KRVL.[26] The last strip in the series appears in the third Newshounds book, Press Badge Blues.

Other Features[edit]

Adder… and Subtracter[edit]

A short story of how Kevin and Stormy first met. Both attend a video signing with Rowan Atkinson. Stormy notices that she and Kevin are the only people to have brought Blackadder videos as oppossed to Mr. Bean. As they talk, and by some more Blackadder, Stormy invites Kevin to her place, but his happiness some fades away when Stormy mentions that she has a boyfriend.


  1. Newshounds 10 March 1999 Vermin Nation: Disguise.
  2. Newshounds 22 March 1999 Vermin Nation: New research program
  3. Newshounds 20 April 1999 The New Stadium: He who fights.
  4. Newshounds 11 May 1999 Gun Deactivator: The miracle exposed!
  5. Newshounds 21 May 1999 Gun Deactivator: The horror, the horror, you know.
  6. Newshounds 11 June 1999 Black Tie Affair III: Why Dogs Graze.
  7. Newshounds 18 June 1999 Kevin in Wonderland V: Coming Down.
  8. Newshounds 6 July 1999 Here's Hal! The Prisoner is Out Cold.
  9. Newshounds 12 July 1999 Here's Hal! Renata's Scary Fanboy.
  10. Newshounds 27 July 1999 Here's Hal! Gimme Chocolate.
  11. Newshounds 2 September 1999 Son of Sam: Unintended Consequences.
  12. Newshounds 8 September 1999 Son of Sam: Sam receives Counsel.
  13. Newshounds 22 September 1999 Son of Sam: Show Trial.
  14. Newshounds 11 October 1999 Son of Sam: Oops!
  15. Newshounds 11 November 1999 The Governor: Sensitive Issue.
  16. Newshounds 16 November 1999 The Governor: Sweeping the Nation.
  17. Newshounds 19 November 1999 The Governor: A Dead Fad.
  18. Newshounds 16 December 1999 Stormy Weather: Stunning News.
  19. Newshounds 20 December 1999 Stormy Weather: A Female's Prerogative?
  20. Newshounds 24 December 1999 Stormy Weather: Distracting Kevin.
  21. Newshounds 12 January 2000 Take Back the Canal: A Nice Plan, But…
  22. Newshounds 25 January 2000 Stormy Weather II: Poetic Justice.
  23. Newshounds 15 February 2000 Stormy Weather II: It's Tempting, But…
  24. Newshounds 21 February 2000 Stormy Weather II: Cancel the Invasion.
  25. Newshounds 17 March 2000 Van Plan: Driver's Ed Quiz.
  26. Newshounds 30 March 2000 Van Plan: KRVL Calls.

External links[edit]

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Thomas K. Dye's Newshounds
See also