Hey, Charlie.

I know you’re in the submarine– You don’t have to shout! Jesus.

Look. I know it’s already 4:15, but the big guy asked us to do one last job today.

Mmhmm. Yeah, so I’m going to need you to make a quick trip to the bottom of the ocean.

Sure. There and back. Just check it out, count the layers, and slap names on them. It’ll take 20 minutes tops.

Right!? It’s water. How much could there be?

Lou’s phone.

Hey, Charlie. What’ve we got?


Wow, coral, fish, AND crabs—sounds biodiverse as hell. Whatcha gonna call it?

The… “sunlight zone”?

No, I get it– Yeah, ‘cause you can see the sunlight.

One question: how exactly is that different from… literally anywhere on land?

Yeah, okay– You know what, forget it. Sunlight zone it is. Just call me back when you’re turning around.


Hey, Charlie.

…It’s still going?

Huh. That’s kind of a curveball.

No, I believe you!

So, the water’s gotten a little darker—big deal. Do you really think this counts as a whole new zone?

Well, because I just turned off my desk lamp, and I’m pretty damn sure that this is still my office.

Fine. Have it your way.

Call it “the twilight zone!” That’s nice and spooky.

No, you’re the nerd. Let me know when you’re en route.

And hurry it up, will you?

Charlie! Where the fuck are you?

What do you mean “there’s fucking more”?

…You know, to be fair, “the twilight zone” implied that something else was coming afterward. That’s on me.

“Midnight zone,” it is. You really can’t see shit?


They what?

Do the fish glow, or do their teeth glow?

Stop telling me about the squid! I don’t care if its eyes are the size of basketballs. I don’t want to know about that shit.

Jesus, that sounds horrible. Glad I’m not down there.

I mean, you’ll be fine. Just touch bottom and call me back.

Charlie! What the shit? Lorraine was expecting me five hours ago! She made meatloaf.

…Okay, okay! Yeah, I’m not the one under 4,000 meters of crushing blackness at levels of pressure that could pop my head like a grape. Sue me.

Whatever. What’s the situation?

So, total black nothingness.

Geez, I don’t know what to call it. We kind of blew our wad with “midnight zone.”

“Abyssal”… So, to be clear, we’re going for actual hell here.

I’m going to write down “Abyssal—parentheses: wet hell.”

Now, turn that sub around. My meatloaf’s getting cold.

Charlie! I don’t understand how you’re still down there! What else could be down there?

Please stop screaming.

I’m going to fucking kill you. Only you could get to the bottom of the goddamn ocean and then fall in a fucking trench.


Well, we’re kind of backed into a corner here. We’ve already used “literal hell.” What exactly do you want me to say? “Double hell”? “Superhell”?

Can you repeat that? You’re crying too hard.

No, I don’t think “The Hungry, Formless Maw of God’s Indifference” would be scientifically appropriate.

Hear me out—how ‘bout “The Hadal Zone”?

You know, like the Greek guy. The one in the dirt with the dead people.

Hades! Yeah.

So, you’ve got your normal wet hell and then your Greek wet hell.

Okay—BAM, “The Hadal Zone.” Report submitted. And you’re welcome for doing all the paperwork.

Listen, I wish I could keep you company during the six-hour return journey, but, as we’ve discussed, it’s meatloaf night.

Just be a team player, Charlie.

Oh, and can you come in early tomorrow? We’re doing space next. Should take about 20 minutes.