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?
Rex Morgan, M.D., 6/17/14
Sarah may have easily defeated an elementary school bully, but now she’s facing a much more difficult challenge: a rich old lady who always gets what she wants, mostly because she’s rich. She’s like Sarah, except a legal adult! In a way, she supposes she does work at the museum, except in the sense that she pays for everything, so the museum works for her, and so does everyone in it, including Sarah. Sarah is right to break out in a cold sweat in the final panel! This is her most difficult adversary yet.
Six Chix, 6/17/14
Six Chix generally offers a vaguely crunchy-liberal take on modern American life, which makes today’s strip a refreshing change of pace. The chickens, of course, are a metaphor for us: while we’ve been led to believe that we should be eating local and organic food and getting in more physical activity like our ancestors did, the truth is those ancestors started driving everywhere and eating processed foods and TV dinners as soon as they could for a reason: because processed food tastes better and physical activity is a pain in the ass. Like caged chickens that remain motionless for their entire lives and are fed an endless supply of corn byproducts, most humans find the idea of not watching TV and eating non-Dorito foodstuffs irritating and pointless.
Wizard of Id, 6/17/14
Wizard of Id is a strip that routinely uses actual torture as a grim punchline, so it’s nice to see it keeping up with the times, I guess.
Apartment 3-G, 6/17/14
Never thought I’d say this, but … where’s Tommie? What’s Tommie up to? I’d sure like to see what’s going on with Tommie, rather than this small-town-gossip thought balloon madness.