Joel enters the strip as the viewpoint character. A naive everyman, Joel continually reacts to the strangeness around him where other students have chosen to ignore it or close themselves off. There is a strong theme of academic ‘brainwashing’ within the school, which Joel continually thwarts through his constant questioning of those things around him and through his naive distractability. Joel also acts as the moral center for the cast.
John appears early on in the strip and proclaims himself “Duke of Darkside”, a title he never sufficiently explains. John is an enigmatic figure with a tinge of menace. While little is revealed about John, he maintains a dark and brooding presence in the group. He seems to know more about the nature of Mulligan College than any of the other students, and alludes to the fact that he has been in the college longer than any of the other students. What is it that he wants?
He’s intelligent, he’s antisocial, he bucks the system…every college has one.
Girdy is Joel’s roommate and polar opposite. Girdy is a happy-go-lucky guy who doesn’t mind mooching just a tad, and acts continually in self-interest and egotism. His attitude of laziness and rude humor come off in an endearing manner and juxtapose nicely with Joel’s upright and scrupulous nature.
Herman is the leader of the talking cockroaches who seem to intermingle freely with the male students of the college who accept them as peers. The cockroaches have wild and uninhibited natures, frequently raiding dorm rooms and plundering food and other things that catch their eyes.
Wes is a self-righteous activist who seems more concerned about labels than what those labels actually stands for. His desire to control his environment is only matched by his zeal for liberal propaganda. He is enamored by the teachings of Mulligan College, particularly those of Dr. Matson. His roommate, Micah, habitually torments him concerning his overly uptight attitudes. Always ready for an argument, Wes has much to learn if he is to survive the harsh dorm life.
Dan is wide-eyed and optimistic most of the time. Hopelessly reminiscent of a better time, Dan hopes to get a top degree and meet his future wife in college. Dan is also the leader of ‘Losers who have no Chicks.’
Micah is an ingenious, if academically lazy, young man. His skills and interests lie ever in the way of computers and gaming. He is generally sarcastic and tongue-in-cheek towards those who do not immediately grasp things that are obvious to him. He enjoys tormenting his uptight roommate, Wes.
Anthony is Mulligan’s only commuter, with a secret knowledge of a backdoor that leads directly from the outside world into the mist-shrouded interior of Mulligan, nicely bypassing the bridge and the robed guardian. Anthony knows a lot about the mysterious goings-on at Mulligan that he’s not saying.
The mysterious girl who first appears handing Joel a note about a “Guy in Box” that can answer his questions has since appeared both on the campus and in the computer games the students play. She has never given her name, but it is clear she has some particular interest in Joel, and he has clearly developed a crush on her that he refuses to admit to his friends.
Guy in Box:
First introduced to Joel through a note The Girl hands him, Joel is convinced “Guy in Box” can answer the puzzles surrounding Mulligan College and Dr. Matson. “Guy in Box”, whose real name has never been given, has enclosed himself in a large cardboard box, convinced that by cutting himself off from his surroundings he can see things more clearly. He has inadvertently gathered a following among the talking cockroaches of which he is not aware.
While he has not given any obvious indication, Joel is convinced that Dr. Matson is the evil crux of all that has happened to him since he came to Mulligan College. He appears to be a caring and dynamic profesor at the college, however Joel suspects that he is the shadowy overlord that runs the more sinister side of the school.