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Comics archive! Mark Trail

Mostly soapy Monday

Mark Trail, 5/25/15

Oh whoops, sorry I haven’t been keeping you up to date on all the Mark Trail action, but trust me when I tell you that after this terrifying helicopter crash everything went fine and the fire was put out by helpful forest rangers and nobody died, boooooring. Anyway, today I certainly hope we’re being introduced to a new recurring character or maybe even the star of his own spin-off strip: Cheerful Suspenders-Wearing Forest Firefighter Guy! Audiences love it when he flashes a crooked grin, tips his helmet, and delivers his beloved catchphrase: “The crew has the fire under control! HA-cha-cha!”

Judge Parker, 5/25/15

Speaking of people tipping their helmet in a courtly fashion, looks like there’s a new hunky he-hunk in town to vie for Neddy’s affection! Sure, she has a sort-of boyfriend who’s in Hong Kong and who’s supposed to be coming back to Spencer-Driverburg … tomorrow? Tomorrow in strip time? Tomorrow’s a long way off in Judge Parker chronology (about eight to fourteen weeks, by my estimate), so Neddy will have lots of time to contemplate Hank’s muscled forearms and cleft chin and the fact that he works for her so she is allowed to choose him for sexual services, in accordance with Spencer law. Also, isn’t Neddy Neddy’s designer? Like, the whole point of this operation is to manufacture the clothes she … designs, right? Never mind, though, look at that boyishly tousled hair, this guy can design whatever he wants, knowwhatimean??? (I mean sex, he can design sex, with Neddy.)

Crankshaft, 5/25/15

And speaking of crooked grins, I know that lopsided sarcasm-smirks are the Funkyverse’s dominant facial expression, but maybe don’t put one on someone who you’re drawing in semi-realistic closeup? Because otherwise it just kinda looks like they’ve had a terrible facial injury that’s mostly sealed up their mouth with scar tissue, dear God.

Mary Worth, 5/25/15

“Three things! I did three things for you! I took you to a restaurant. A restaurant! Now just tell me, if I were a truck, would you report me for veering wildly across multiple lanes of traffic, or would you have sex with me? I need to know!”

Hagar the Horrible, 5/25/15

Hagar definitely stabbed that guy with his sword between panels two and three, right? Stabbed him to death? Stabbed him to death and took his pizza?

Mostly Soapy Thursday

Apartment 3-G, 5/14/15

So Gabriella’s dead mom came back, turning Gabriella’s white hair black with shock, and told her … that her house was evil, or maybe Diane told her, who can say, but the important thing is that Martin’s reaction to this news is 100% hilarious. First of all, Martin’s profession, as near as I can tell, is “generic rich businessman,” so his assurance that he personally inspected their home is not particularly reassuring. “I inspected every inch of that house myself, Gabby. There are no wasteful structural redundancies or safety features that I could see. It’s extremely cost-efficient!” Then there’s his smug expression in panel two. “Heh heh, seems my beloved fiancée has been whipped into a terrified anxiety frenzy. There’s no way this won’t be a laugh riot! I gotta see this in person!”

Mark Trail, 5/14/15

So, yes, the chain of problem-solving so far has been very simple: we get fire to get rid of the beetles, and then we get the helicopters to get rid of the fire, and then we get the geese to get rid of the helicopters. Who are we going to get to get rid of the geese, though? Beavers? Do beavers eat geese?

Rex Morgan, M.D., 5/14/15

Yes, Sarah is an amoral creepazoid child-adult, but she’s just so cheerful about everything that I have a hard time really disliking her. “Oh, know that! I also write about how pictures make you happy or sad. Feelings, right? Feelings are things that the humans have?”

Mary Worth, 5/14/15

Today’s unsung Mary Worth hero is the guy staring down into the basket of this hot air balloon. “Christ, what a mess! I can’t believe they left this for me to clean up. What did those two do up there?”

Family Circus, 5/14/15

Thanks to all those pamphlets Daddy keeps leaving around the house, Dolly knows that fiat money inflates away the wealth of industrious savers, while specie retains its value!

Soapy Tuesday

Judge Parker, 5/12/15

Oh hey, remember when Rocky and Godiva got into a big fight, and made up, by sexing into the next morning? Well, surprise, they weren’t doing anything as hedonistic and human as sex, silly. Nope, they’ve been working hard on Rocky’s book, shaping a lurid narrative that will exploit their tabloid fame and further line their pockets! Presumably this book will rocket up the nonfiction best-seller list and stay there for as long as the Chambers Affair tops the fiction list, i.e., roughly until the heat death of the universe. Neddy is smiling because she knows that, as the representative of the Spencer-Driver clan in closest physical proximity to this profitable enterprise, she’s the one they’re going to hand the undeservedly large check to.

Rex Morgan, M.D., 5/12/15

Meanwhile, in Judge Parker’s sister strip, little Sarah has figured out what art is for: profit! The sad truth is that Sarah’s paintings of horsies or school buses or whatever the hell it is she ends up actually producing are probably going to sell better than 95% of the work of contemporary serious artists. So, you know, get it while you can, kid!

Mark Trail, 5/12/15

Oh, goodie! It looks like one of Mark and Wally’s problems (tree-devouring beetles) is about to be solved by another one of their problems (an out-of-control forest fire)! But — who will Mark punch? He’s gotta punch someone, right? Can he punch the O. Henrician dramatic irony that has left him without an antagonist?

Phantom, 5/12/15

Huh, the family that’s the end result of 21 generations of racially pure inbreeding and dedicated to enforcing its own version of morality, eschewing the authority of any state and creating its own mythic cult, isn’t super big on democracy! IMAGINE THAT.