Main content:

Comics archive! Family Circus

THE GOLD STAFF OF IMMORTALITY! No, wait mortality, it represents mortality, never mind

Gasoline Alley, 5/26/16

Gasoline Alley seems a little too square to engage in metanarrative chicanery, but how else should we interpret today’s strip? After weeks and weeks of a boring, convoluted prison break storyline featuring some of the strip’s most irritating recurring characters, we suddenly switch back to Walt, complaining that the ceremony in which he received the Golden Cane Of Agedness from the mayor, which we never saw in the strip, wasn’t covered properly in the media. Poor Walt! Anyway, I’m very intrigued that whatever municipality he lives in has an expensive object that can literally only be taken from its owner by prying it out of their dead, cold hands.

Mark Trail, 5/26/16

OK, let’s be real: the last few weeks of “Mark ’n’ friends try and fail to escape from the cave” have been super boring. But today at least Chekhov’s rock-climbing gun, which was prominently mounted on the wall of the set in the first act, finally goes off. We also some mid-air derring do, as Mark and Carina almost tumble to their death off a cave waterfall but Mark saves them at the last minute by jamming his rock … climbing … axe … thingy into the cliff wall. And kudos to the strip for taking as much care to acknowledge the biology of Homo sapiens as it does for the other animals it covers; whereas most action movies feature characters grabbing onto things in mid-fall and suffering no ill-effects, Mark has saved himself and Carina at the cost of shattering his rib cage, just as he would in real life.

Family Circus, 5/26/16

Haha, I love PJ’s look of heavy-lidded disdain here. “God damn it, Jeffy, enough with this ‘everyone has a valid perspective’ bullshit. Kill the wolf! Kill it!

Death-haunted Saturday

Crankshaft, 5/14/16

I sort of thought I was joking earlier this week but no, it turns out they really are killing off Rose! They’ve been doing this arts-y jumping back and forth over two weeks or so of strip time, and I suppose it’s possible this funeral scene is going to be a dumb fakeout, but it sure does seem like she’s dead (of cancer, natch). You have to almost admire the perversity of today’s strip, in which the grim punchline is put into the first panel and then the second panel is just a son staring at his hated mother, waiting for her to die.

Hagar the Horrible, 5/14/16

Meanwhile, Hagar the Horrible shows you how to land a really solid “ha ha, it’s funny because he’s old and dying” joke.

Family Circus, 5/14/16

As near as we can tell, most human societies have believed that the soul lives on after death in some form for all of history. What if, ironically, this only became reality once we mastered the art of photography? In the 19th century, processes beyond our ken began tying the ghostly echoes of our loved ones to the visual representations we produced. The more pictures we took, the stronger the undead entities became. And now that we store thousands and thousands of perfect digital images … in the cloud … the consequences will be too terrible to imagine.

Mary Worth, 5/14/16

People may doubt Ian and Toby as a couple, but I think it’s adorable how she always looks for a way to slip her wedding vows into daily conversation!

Please do not ad lib in the opening scene of Hamlet

Spider-Man, 4/27/16

Oh, man, there’s a lot I haven’t been keeping you up to date on with Spider-Man! Like the wicked Xandu, after imprisoning our heroes, kidnapped Mary Jane (whom he assumed was Dr. Strange’s wife), and claimed her as her own! And then flew her over Manhattan! But the she almost got airsick and puked! So he landed in Washington Square Park! And Spidey and Doctor Strange tracked her down because she’s wearing a homing device that allows her husband to locate her at all times, which is a little unsettling, honestly! But then Xandu whisked her off to some magical other dimension! Anyway, none of that is anywhere near as interesting or funny to me as Dr. Strange using his invisibility powers to make Spider-Man look dumb in front of a gawking, jeering crowd of New Yorkers.

Family Circus, 4/27/16

It can be awkward having “the talk” with your kids about where babies come from. Fortunately for Ma and Big Daddy Keane, the post-sex future, in which humans are vat-grown in automated cloning facilities and flown to their assigned dwelling-pod by robot helicopters, is almost upon us.

Hagar the Horrible, 4/27/16

Lucky Eddie used to jerk off into a sock puppet, but then he lost it.