Even though Mr. Dark has appeared in this comic before, this week’s episode is a far more fitting introduction to the character. For those of you who don’t know, the entire Running on Empty series is only part one of a four part metaseries of stories that is outlined in greater detail here.
Mr. Dark plays a pivotal role in all of these series, though his identity remains a mystery until the very end.
In the context of Running on Empty, Mr. Dark serves as Dan’s occasional mentor, spouting life advice that is consistently gloomy but amazingly accurate. The two characters originally met during Dan’s six month disappearance, which explains why the characters had some level of familiarity when they spoke at the Sheraton event.
Oh yeah, and Merry Christmas.