How are you celebrating America’s Birthday, patriots?
Wizard of Id, 7/4/14
The Wizard of Id crew exists in some faux-medieval land far the bounty of American Freedom, yet its inhabitants are aware that the American experiment ought to mean an end to strife, and the discovery that we can join together with our former enemies to celebrate democracy.
In Crock, we see the jealousy that our national greatness arouses in others, as these cruel and cynical Frenchmen mockingly pantomime our Independence Day celebrations while imposing their colonial will in the North African desert.
Dennis the Menace, 7/4/14
Dennis imagines his future manic dictatorship, in which the special nature of this day’s celebration is lost in a ceaseless barrage of explosions, each gaudier and louder than the last, driving all rational thought from everyone’s mind until they can no longer think straight enough to resist his menacing tyranny.
Family Circus, 7/4/14
The Keane Kids represent contemporary Americans’ total ignorance of our nation’s Founding: they don’t know or don’t care that the nitrate-salt tubes and sugar-filled buns they eagerly cram down their greedy maws would have filled our first generation of political leaders with mingled terror and disgust.
Beetle Bailey, 7/4/14
Finally, Beetle Bailey reminds you to ring, not bong. Don’t do drugs, kids!
Hagar the Horrible, 7/1/14
Here’s a problem I sometimes have with my critical approach to Hagar the Horrible: my instinct in making jokes about it is to contrast the low-stakes domestic humor that drives most of the strip’s gags with the actual nightmarish bloodbath that was Viking society — and yet that contrast also sometimes seems to be the intended reading of the strip, and I feel that’s happening more and more often. Take Lucky Eddie, for instance: one of the core things that’s “funny” about him is that he’s a little too gentle to be a Viking warrior. So today, Hagar is having him kill an adorable rabbit that’s begging for its life, in hope of snuffing out that spark of human kindness within him and making him more effective at the murder and slaving that makes up the core of his job. This is one of the most traumatizing Hagar the Horribles I’ve read in years, is what I’m saying.
Wizard of Id, 7/1/14
Hey, remember when 300 was a popular movie, seven years ago? And there were lots of ripped mostly naked dudes in it? And remember when the 300 sequel came out, four months ago, and it was significantly less popular? Anyway, this is what the Wizard of Id creative team thinks an attractive muscular torso looks like, I guess.
Dennis the Menace, 7/1/14
Dennis is passive-aggressively slut-shaming Joey’s dog! I dub this … pretty menacing.
Mary Worth, 6/28/14
Mary is taking an interesting tack in dealing with little Olive’s supposed revelations: rather than dismissing them outright and telling her she’s crazy, she’s smoothing down the edges, encouraging her to take the wisdom she’s receiving directly from the Divine and recasting it in the language of a Hallmark card. “Dear, I’ve never had my soul burned by the otherworldly glow of a being from a transcendent plane to whom we would seem to be mere insects, but I still believe we could all do better if we just try a little harder!” she says, as she fills a pie crust with ice chips for some reason.
Funky Winkerbean, 6/28/14
Under most screenwriting contracts, the writer is actually paid in multiple steps: this first and largest chunk is sent upon delivery, but there are additional payments designated for the expected rewrite and polishing work that every screenplay goes through. So, in other words, Les is literally being paid thousands of dollars to write while being put up in one of Hollywood’s most exclusive and storied hotels. Don’t you feel terrible for him?
Wizard of Id, 6/28/14
Do you think “board” is some ancient but still legitimate synonym for “hump,” or was it just the end product of a long and tortuous negotiation between the author and the syndicate about leg-humping euphemisms?