One Man, and a Crate of Puppets
The Puppet Man with the Vault Boy puppet on his hand, riding Mr. Pinch
One Man, and a Crate of Puppets is an official Fallout webcomic written by Jerry Holkins (aka Tycho Brahe) and illustrated by Mike Krahulik (aka John Gabriel), (creators of the video game webcomic Penny Arcade), co-created with Fallout 3 lead designer Emil Pagliarulo.
In July 2008, the comic was launched at the official Fallout 3 website. It follows the life of the sole inhabitant of Vault 77 and his crate of puppets and was updated every Wednesday. The first strip also shows Vault 43 and Vault 69.
In the beginning of the comic, the protagonist discovered that he was the only living person in Vault 77, accompanied only by a crate of puppets, as part of the Vault Experiment. During the first months, the Vault Dweller went through the initial panic and depression caused by being locked alone in a Vault. He didn't actually open the puppet crate until one year, three months and twelve days after the lock-up. After apparently developing a multiple personality disorder (his second personality being in the form of a "talking" Vault Boy puppet), he opened the vault to find himself in front of a radscorpion the size of a Boeing 747 to which he quickly closed the vault.
After taking some time "to sleep on it," the Vault 77 Dweller was successful in leaving the Vault, riding a giant ant he named Mr. Pinch. In regards to the outside world, he was rather positive, noting while it was hot for December he wasn't really a snow person. He has run into a mysterious ghoul that has only one arm and wears a vault suit without a seen number, possibly from Vault 12.
He is later captured by slavers. While they debate on whether to enslave him or simply eat him, the vault dweller tries to warn about his puppet, as it's "crazy" and has "killed before". That night, one of the slavers in a panic runs to another group of slavers, telling them "the puppet man" has killed his partner and is coming for them.
The final comic shows the Vault 77 Dweller, along with the puppet, standing amongst the pile of dead slavers, covered in blood. The narrator concedes that the vault was a failure, but reminds the reader that "the Vaults were never meant to save anyone."
In the slaver barracks at Paradise Falls there is a Vault 77 jumpsuit & holotape ('Burn this goddamn jumpsuit') on a set of shelves hidden behind the stairs. The holotape says "Like I told ya man, I don't fuckin' know where it came from. But it freaks the boys out. Some story from a while back, 'bout a stranger with no name. Just...get rid of the damn thing. Ain't no good gonna come from keeping it around. Besides. If it is...his. Maybe he'll come back for it. Comprende?".
- Puppet Man
- Vault Boy puppet
- Other puppets: The King, Grandma, Reverend Hound
- A giant radscorpion
- Mr. Pinch, a giant ant
- An unnamed one-armed ghoul from a vault (may be a reference to Vault 12)
- Slavers/raiders, including Bob and a one-eyed slaver.