Girl Genius
Girl Genius

"Cheese is great! The moon is made of it, you know!" ~Kaja[1]

In Girl Genius dialog and artwork, cheese often appears seemingly at random. One theory suggests that such cheese may highlight romantic attraction, especially ill-fated or skewed attraction: QED lust. Behold the power of Cheese. However, many appearances of cheese have no connection to romance (see list below).[2]

Another theory suggests that a mention or appearance of cheese in an incongruous context is often funny (perhaps funnier than many other items in incongruous contexts), making it a good choice for an entertaining object appearing at random.[3]

Appearances of Cheese[]

In Canon[]

(In order of appearance.)

First Journey[]

  • Silas Merlot's pet project was (supposedly literally) to turn chalk into cheese . A Merlot is a grape grown for making a dry red wine and might be served with cheese. (No necessary romantic connection. [4])
  • When the students discuss whether Agatha was in her underwear when she went flying with Gil in the falling machine, that might be cheese on the table. (Of course, tables are not unreasonable places to find cheese.)
  • Agatha tells Von Pinn that she wouldn't have Gil even if Von Pinn "stripped him naked and dipped him in cheese" .
  • Cheese is unsurprisingly among the sandwich-making components that Gil supplies for Agatha after she emerges from her Rescue-Clank Sleep-building.
  • Lars, Agatha's leading man in Master Payne's Circus of Adventure Heterodyne shows, and who, to his own amazement, fell for her (romantically and ultimately), was a cheesemaker's apprentice[5] before running off to join the circus.
  • Anevka tells her brother Tarvek to save the the flirtation for dessert , because "it will go well with the cheese". (This is presumably is a pun suggesting that the flirtation is "cheesy," rather than an actual suggestion that literal cheese has something to do with flirtation.)
  • The soldier who, before ordering Master Payne and his Circus out of Sturmhalten, presents Payne with a monetary reward for the "capture" of "Madame Olga" (Agatha) relays presumably Prince Aaronev's claim "noblesse oblige" as "no bless obli cheese" . (No necessary romantic connection.[6])
  • Possibly Chef's triumph over (his nemesis?) Brillat-Savarin through the use of pie.
  • Among the praises of Mechanicsburg[7] sung in The Mechanicsburg Tourism Song by Tom Smith [8] are the touching words "How beautiful her dairy farms, / And for her cheese we all give thanks.".
  • Cheese is among the various methods of killing that Bangladesh DuPree clears (however that happens) with Gil for use in the defense of his convalescing father. (No necessary romantic connection.[9])
  • A wedge of cheese appears in a frame with Zeetha and Higgs immediately following a frame in which Zeetha appears to be making googoo eyes at the airman. Its depiction is explicable, in that there is a bar fight going on around them and a lot of random objects may be being thrown, but presumably said depiction is not undesigned.[10] From Zeetha's reaction, it may be that it struck the back of her head.
  • One of the flavors of snails[11] offered by a street vendor terrified by the activation of the Torchmen.
  • A little girl asks Zeetha whether she is a tramp,[12] and then, otherwise unfathomably, whether she likes cheese. (This makes perfect sense if the only definition of tramp the girl knows is "poor person who doesn't have a home". It's only a step from "poor" to "hungry".)
  • Cheese is part of Gil's summary[13] of Zola's plan to gain power.
  • It is also part of Mittelmind's brief explanation of his background.[14]
  • Fraulein Snaug brings a special snack to Von Zinzer, and the two of them share some first aid and heart-to-heart revelations. There's a reason the chapter's called "Flirting Minions."
  • Why do little boys get sent out of the house in Agatha’s great-grandfather’s time? For cheese , of course. [15]
  • Emil's House of Cheese has the slogan "Be all that you can Brie".[16]
  • Rebuilding his strength after a noxious knifing, Tweedle has (along with various spirits) a hearty block of Swiss by his side.[17] As with almost everything/everyone with which/whom Tweedle comes in contact, it has a knife stuck in it. It is not presently known whether this violence was precipitated by the cheese declaring a competing claim to the Storm King throne.

Second Journey[]

In Maxim Buys a Hat[]

  • Ognian requests a special lunch from his waitress involving a freshly emptied grease trap, raw meat and "lots ov cheeze." By the end of the mini-arc, he is suggesting they go find someplace, and her arms are around his neck. (Note: she is never heard to *say* anything in terms of attraction.[23] It is left to the reader to guess how much chemistry is actually occurring.)
  • Maxim tricks Ol' Man Death into surrendering his hat by asking for a hat sandwich and requesting it to go. This answers Ognian's question as to why there is cheese on the hat. However, Oggie does not get around to noticing the note in Maxim's hand, nor did he hear Maxim flirting with Ol' Man Death's granddaughter, Zeuxippe.

In the Sketch Book[]

In Revenge of the Weasel Queen[]

In Franz Scortchmaw, Great Dragon of Mechanicsburg and the Story We Haven't Named Yet![]

  • Hector responds to a claim that is un imbécile complet by saying he can identify over forty kinds of cheese .

In Filler Art Work[]

In the Novels[]

See Also[]


  1. (at about 3:55).
  2. In fact, the theory is, in essence, that the explicable presence of cheese constitutes the runny running first "hearing" (meaning) of a double entendre. The weakness of the theory is that obtaining the second hearing will require a certain mindset and some, possibly considerable, ingenuity. For instance, the moon, mentioned by Kaja, is, in fact, a heavenly body. However, there's no doubt that the work's artist is able to engage this kind of mindset.
  3. These are not, of course, mutually exclusive.
  4. However, Merlot may be considered married to his work.
  5. "You see before you..."
  6. "Don't (no) perform (bless) shotgun (obli) weddings (cheese)"? "I got you out of bed because you were making too much noise"?
  7. and presumably the countryside under its sway, unless there are subterranean pastures in the city proper, which actually is not unthinkable
  8. of which part is sung in-panel; the entire song is written below the comic strip, as it would have been unwieldy to fit it all within the strip itself
  9. However, applying the theory to DuPree makes it the most horrific of the methods suggested. Alternatively, it can be seen as the penultimate stage (before hugging Gil, the "World's best boss!") of going from annoyed to falling in love with the task before her.
  10. This is the essence of the theory
  11. If snails do not seem to have a connection to romance, you have not seen Microcosmos, or The Philosopher Kings’ video, “You Don’t Love Me,” which incorporates footage from the film.
  12. Mama sez you must be cause of the way you dress!
  13. The old prophecy is fulfilled, free beer and cheese for all. — compare "ale and whores", part of a famous 1999 Kurtz quote
  14. I told the Baron: "Give me a thousand orphans, a hedge maze and enough cheese and I can—"
  15. Sounds like magnetizing them was a really good idea, actually. If you don't see the romance connection, go away and come back when you have kids.
  16. Appears just as Agatha jumps into Tarvek's arms. And with the Castle talking about her in a pretty dress.
  17. At this point he has Agatha in bed (albeit shackled) and is declaring how well they work together. In the following pages he reveals his plan to keep her as his wife.
  18. You never know, he might have absent-mindedly stolen his girl.
  19. In the very next panel, Ulm enters a Paris tunnel.
  20. This is also where Varpa catches up with Tweedle's Smoke Knight Malek and starts distracting him enough —with kissing —that Violetta notices them.
  21. That's Romance language (French/Italian) for "The Love Cheese". Exactly.
  22. May also be foreshadowing. See Mad page.
  23. You've got to be kidding me. It's a visual medium.
  24. In both cases, "grill him," in the sense of examine carefully, "with cheese", which is again what we're talking about and she has in abundance