Mary Worth, 8/21/14
Boy, I’ve really been dropping the ball on this Mary Worth storyline for the past few weeks, haven’t I? The short version is that Olive’s medical procedure went well and that pesky cyst was successfully removed from her torso! Today, we learn that she’s been carrying it around in a little purse ever since.
Dennis the Menace, 8/21/14
“Dad’s inability or unwillingness to really be present for me during these fleeting, precious moments is kinda ruining my childhood for me. Hope you don’t stay up all night despairing over what a terrible job you guys are doing as parents!” Menacing factor: strong.
Funky Winkerbean, 8/21/14
Les is super excited about the fact that the movie adaptation of his book (for which he’s already been paid handsomely) has now completely unravelled. The failure of the project will almost certainly damage the careers and finances of any number of people and companies who believed in it. Les is excited about this because he’s an asshole.
Judge Parker, 8/21/14
Hmm, in addition having her work as legal secretary at what he thought was a thriving practice, Sam also tasked Gloria with managing his daughter’s finances! NOPE NO IDEA WHY SHE’D WANT TO QUIT THIS JOB, NONE AT ALL
Wizard of Id, 8/21/14
You know, considering how often the Wizard of Id uses actual torture as a punchline, I’m kind of surprised that it would be the strip that really manages to boil Orwell’s ideas about how dictatorships control thought through control of language into a single, effective panel.
Spider-Man is going to use his superpowers to more effectively photograph one of his main antagonists successfully fighting crime, so he can sell those photographs at poverty-level freelance print journalist prices! I know there’s no TV watching involved, but we may have hit Peak Newspaper Spider-Man, guys.
I like to make fun of the Goggle Eyes of Horror that often accompany Shoe punchlines, but I don’t mean to neglect their complement, the Heavy Lids of Despair, which the Perfesser is sporting in both panels here to excellent effect. Never mind why Roz is asking Cosmo the kind of question normally posed in a job interview — she probably sees him every day and he’s the only one in the restaurant, so lord knows it’s not surprising they long ago ran out of things to talk about. The facial expression accompanying his response is pricelessly appropriate: he’s in late middle age, working in a dying industry, and living in filth with a nephew he barely tolerates. What does she think he’s going to be doing in five years? The same stuff, obviously, only with more heart blockage and worrying letters about the state of the Bird Newspaper Guild pension fund he’d been counting on for his meager retirement. He’s asking Siri, which is notoriously terrible at understanding anything but the most basic and restricted questions, what the future holds, but his face tells you he’s only doing it because he knows the answer all too well.
Mark Trail, 8/20/14
New Mark Trail scribe James Allen may be shaking things up in the storied strip, but he knows how to give readers what they tune in for: namely, colossally moronic villains who just leave evidence of their misdeeds lying around in publicly accessible unlocked crates, and Mark saying “What th’!” And we can also see a new tradition forming: the shocking moment of revelation in each poaching-related storyline will include Mark sadly verbalizing exactly which animal part or byproduct is being poached. Anyway, Chris “Dirty” Whathisname is gonna get punched real soon. Note that even before finding evidence of his guilt, Mark refused to use the man’s ludicrous self-appointed nickname in his internal monologue.
Gil Thorp, 8/20/14
Welp, this summer’s high-stakes storyline about star football prospect/retro architecture aficionado True Standish considering going to Milford has ended with … True Standish going to one of Milford’s conference arch-rivals! And all because Coaches Thorp and Kaz refused to ratchet up the pressure and try to force the Mudlarks to become a high school football powerhouse that could really highlight True’s skills, an admirable attitude that also nicely dovetails with their desire to do as little work as possible. I’m guessing this isn’t the last we’ll seen of True, but even if it is, we’ll always have panel three’s ludicrously awkward handshake to remember him by.
Dick Tracy, 8/20/14
Hey, remember when Dick Tracy’s wife couldn’t get an email for days and days because her ISP had a virus? You might think that represents a terrible technical failure on their part, but now that we know that Dick sends all his emails as large video files of him talking rather than just text like a normal person, I’m beginning to have some sympathy for the pressure this particular customer puts on their infrastructure.
Dennis the Menace, 8/20/14
This would be an extremely non-menacing installment of Dennis Misunderstands Very Common English-Language Turns Of Phrase In the Darndest Way were it not for the look of genuine terror on his face. “But — Mr. Wilson! Mrs. Wilson reported that you’d already chronovoyaged to 1935 and were living undercover backwhen to prevent General Murchinson’s grandparents from ever meeting one another! Our upstream agents report that the timeline is still polluted and there’s a 95% possibility likelihood that the coup will have occurred in the next six to nine weeks! Unless — have you been ricocheted back to nowtime by a paradox-eddy? Have-will President-for-Life Murchinson’s own time-scientists perfect(ed) the technology to set up a Time Travel Exclusion Zone around certain dates? We thought we will have taken every precaution!”
Marvin has taken a break from its usual array of poop jokes this week to focus on one of the more recent and unpleasant additions to its cast: Marvin’s grandparents’ unpleasant little dog. Today we learn that Marvin’s grandparents’ unpleasant little dog is openly obsessed with racial purity.
Slylock Fox, 8/11/14
One of the many questions I have about the post-animapocalypse world of Slylock Fox involves biodiversity: have the newly sapient animals remained restricted to their original ranges, or, like the early members of genus Homo, are they using their smarts to conquer new environments? Today we learn that Australia, at least, is still largely the domain of its unique native fauna, who have in their brief period of ascendency already established an iron-clad hierarchy: the marsupials wear fancy clothes and sell expensive baubles to each other, while the monotremes live on the margins of society and are forced to steal to survive. Unfortunately, the marsupials aren’t equipped to maintain the oppressive social structure they’ve created and have been forced to call in placental mammals from outside to help. If human history is any guide, this is a terrible, terrible mistake.
Judge Parker, 8/11/14
Haha, looks like we’ve reached the real talk phase of Gloria’s exit interview! Anyway, everybody in Judge Parker is doing no work and getting paid for it and now people are getting grumpy about it for some reason.
Dennis the Menace, 8/11/14
I think this is the most I’ve ever seen Mr. Wilson enjoying himself! He’s just going to town on some snacks and then he’s going to pass out on the couch covered in crumbs. Dennis is being a total scold about it, which I deem to be unusually unpleasantly menacing.