Sam & Max are two characters created by cartoonist Steve Purcell. The titular dog and lagomorph officially debuted in the comic book Sam & Max: Freelance Police. From there the duo found their way to their own LucasArts adventure game Sam & Max Hit the Road and their own Fox Kids cartoon The Adventures of Sam & Max: Freelance Police. After the demise of LucasArts three seasons of Sam & Max adventure games would be produced by Telltale Games- Sam & Max: Save the World, Sam & Max: Beyond Time and Space, and Sam & Max: The Devil's Playhouse. The first two of those seasons have been remastered in loving, gorgeous detail by the heroes at Skunkape Games

Sam & Max are "employed" as the Freelance Police. Not quite freelance, and not quite police the boys investigate crimes, at the behest of an unseen commissioner, with all the finesse and subtly as a nuclear bomb while comitting more crimes than they solve. The duo inhabit an exaggerated cartoony world rife with pop culture references and absurdist humor.

It's hard to impress just how much I LOVE this dog and rabbity-thing. They are, perhaps, the two fictional characters the most near and dear to my heart. I think my adoration for Sam & Max- like many things in my life- can be traced back to my uncle introducing me to Mystery Science Theater 3000 at an astoundingly early age (nothing attunes a kid to decades old pop culture references like MST3K). One only has to glance at my bedroom walls, phone wallpaper, or jacket to know I'm crazy about the Freelance Police.

As I often say to my significant other- these games, comics and show are just jam packed with pure gold in the form of snappy dialogue. From Sam's long winded exclamations ("Sweet suffering Saint Sebastian on the sousaphone in a short story by Susan Sontag!") to the pair's barrage of pop culture references had me hooked immediately. Kurt Kalata's book The Guide to Classic Graphic Adventure Games describes Sam & Max's interplay like

"Like most buddy comedies, the charisma derives from the interplay between the eponymous heroes. Sam has a penchant for overly long, obtuse vocabulary, and elaborate non-sequiturs, all tendencies which frustrated Max to no end. Max is completely naked but apparently stores a massive Luger pistol on his person... A good amount of the banter are vague references to past, unseen events, leaving the player to fill in the implications."

I'm not into shipping Sam and Max so don't ask.