Dennis the Menace
Mary Worth, 11/27/13
I know you’re all wondering what happened to Mary after she got viciously shoved right in the middle of Central Park. Turns out that she was rescued by the timely intervention of hunky silver-haired Broadway legend Ken Kensington, one of Mary’s top celebrity crushes! Usually I’m in a favor of anything that would put a definitive end to the sad, sexless non-relationship between Mary and Dr. Jeff, but this whole meet-cute scenario is a little too neat for my liking. My guess is that Ken used his theater world contacts to find out-of-work non-equity actors willing to play any role at any price … even if that role is Dastardly Central Park Mugger Who Fightens Attractive Women Of A Certain Age And Allows Ken Kensington To Swoop In And Play The Hero, and the price is far below scale. It certainly would go a long way towards explaining this facial expression:
Obviously this is much less “So, it’s come to this, I’m trying to grab purses from old ladies so I can afford my next meal/fix” and much more “OK, Devin, remember your Method classes: Place yourself in the mindset of a criminal. Not just any criminal, but the most nefarious criminal madman alive! Yes, I can feel the power and insanity flowing through me! Ken says that there’s an understudy part opening in Jersey Boys soon and that he knows the director — success is so close I can almost taste it!”
Dennis the Menace, 11/27/13
The span of time between when you realize that other beings can die and when you realize that you will someday, inevitably, die is definitely the most menacing age. Sometimes it lasts years!
“Ha ha, don’t worry! We’re enjoying a nice dinner now, but later I’m going to kill most of them and kick the rest of them out of the house.”
Brad and Toni will have no time to paint their future bedroom or even decorate it in any way, because every single moment they spend in it they’ll just be straight-up fucking. They probably won’t even bother to get furniture or anything; they’ll just go at it constantly on top of a pile of blankets or something in a corner. Anyway, I’m going back to ignoring Luann forever, right after I get finished with the vomiting.
Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 11/22/13
Jughaid has been spending a lot of time reading the “evil temptress” portions of the bible, which, to be fair, there are several to choose from!
Family Circus, 11/22/13
“I’m smilin’ right now, real smug-like, ’cause I’m super-convinced that hearin’ my voice will make you happy, and not, say, close your eyes and hold the bridge of your nose between your thumb and forefinger and sit very still for a few minutes.”
Dennis the Menace, 11/22/13
“You must be part fish, because my dad says you’re a real catch, and his browser history is full of hardcore mermaid porn!“
Funky Winkerbean, 11/13/13
I’ve settled into a sort of Stockholm Syndrome thing with Funky Winkerbean, where I’ve decided that, since I’m apparently going to keep reading it indefinitely, and it’s going to keep being an endless pit of misery and death indefinitely, I’ve got to figure out how to enjoy it. My current strategy is to enjoy it when the misery and death happen to characters I particularly dislike, so this week’s plot, which has been focused on Les’s inability to write a maudlin direct-to-cable movie about his wife’s death, has been pretty pleasing to me. You might recall that this story began months ago with Les getting a fat check and then getting smug about some of the clunkiest dialogue ever written. But now he’s realized that he can never write a script about his beloved dead wife, because he can’t really imagine what her thoughts were, probably because when she was alive he was too busy thinking about how her various life tragedies were affecting him emotionally to really get to know her. Somehow this didn’t prevent him from writing a best-selling memoir about her, of course, but to write a screenplay he needs to know her every thought, since obviously movies focus much more closely on characters’ internal emotional lives than books do.
Anyway, the Les-suffering is unfortunately about to end, because now he’s going to read Lisa’s diary! The diary he swore never to read, for some reason! This will solve all his problems and probably he’ll just take big chunks of prose out of the diary and use them in his screenplay and he won’t even have to pay Lisa for it, because she’s dead.
Apartment 3-G, 11/13/13
Speaking of death, I’m dying with laughter at Governor Sexy having his extremely public marriage proposal interrupted in one of the most humiliating ways possible. The YouTube video of this delightful moment will of course go viral, with the autotuned version “I Have To Take This Call (It’s Marty)” becoming a surprise novelty hit on iTunes.
Dennis the Menace, 11/13/13
Everyone in the Mitchell family takes on whatever chores need doing, dividing them up equitably without regards to outdated gender norms, and Dennis doesn’t care who knows it! He truly is a menace — to the patriarchy.
Frankly, the whole “Momma was very cold outside” angle of this strip seems overly complex, don’t you think? I mean, Momma is haunted by the grim spectre of death at all times and would presumably be quick with a depressing quip in response to a “Isn’t it great to be alive” no matter what the circumstances, though she might lean less towards “Let me check to see if I’m still alive” and more towards “I am alive and it isn’t great at all; it’s actually quite awful.” Still, the way MaryLou is leaning on the question, combined with Francis’s sly look, makes me think that something more is up here, like maybe they dumped her a snowdrift a mile away and made her walk back home, and are now trying to subtly ask her if she’s dead or not.
Ha ha, it sure is hard to keep up with the slang that the kids today use! In unrelated news, Alexander suffered some kind of traumatic brain injury at football practice.
Mark Trail, 11/9/13
New adventure in Mark Trail, everyone! This week we’ve seen that it’ll revolve around the most hoary Mark Trail MacGuffin — Indian artifacts, and the stealing thereof, a staple of this strip that I’ve been detailing since the very earliest days of this blog. Still, I’m enjoying the pleasingly noirish setup here: two ex-cons, one literally just hours out of prison, drinking frosty mugs of beer, discussing their Last Big Score. The sad faces and the five o’clock shadow and the hunched shoulders make for nice atmosphere and maybe we’re even getting some foreshadowing that Jared will turn away from a life of artifact-napping before it’s too late (seriously, can you really believe anyone named “Jared” would be an unredeemable hardened criminal), but personally it’s the frosty mugs of beer that I’m fixated on here. I’m all the more fixated because a colorist’s error in panel two has made Jeff’s sleeve blue instead of brown, which makes it look like Jared’s arm is twisted around at an impossible angle, all the better to slosh beer foam everywhere, I guess.
Dennis the Menace, 11/9/13
Dennis and his awful band of child thieves are going to seal Mr. Wilson’s gold teeth right out of his head.
I mean … yes, he is? Everyone saw him? J. Jonah Jameson, you old rascal, I think you’ve finally found away to defeat Spider-Man: by just asking absurd counterfactual questions whenever anyone defends him. “In case you didn’t notice, there hasn’t been anyone reporting that their children have been kidnapped, so Spider-Man is innocent of your charge that he’s eaten thousands of New York City babies!” “But is he, Robbie? Is he??”
Dennis the Menace, 11/7/13
Dennis’s mounting anxiety over his future dreamscape combines with his mother’s crafty expression to make this panel one of the most chilling things I’ve seen today. We can never know exactly what she said to him during storytime tonight, but we now know that Alice wears the Mitchell family menacing crown.
Here is a brief unpaid, unsolicited endorsement: Conor Lastowka, who writes for Rifftrax and co-curates the [Citation Needed] Tumblr with me and is generally hilarious, has, (unlike certain [Citation Needed] Tumblr co-curators who are still wrangling with book-length prose) finished a novel! It’s called Gone Whalin’ is about whaling, and time travel, and other exciting topics. You can check out the webpage or download the first three chapters or watch the book trailer or just buy it already!
Never let it be said that long-running legacy strips don’t occasionally enjoy innovating! For instance, today’s Lockhorns brings us a new perspective on Leroy and Loretta — specifically, a perspective about nine inches above their bedroom floor, for some reason. Normally I think of the Lockhorns as being fairly short and squat, but today we experience what it would be like to be a tiny, tiny creature over whom they loom menacingly!
Family Circus, 10/23/13
I can’t even tell you how happy I am that Jeffy has a sweatshirt (t-shirt? it’s hard to tell, given his freakishly stumpy arms) that just says “JEFFY” across the front in big letters. Do you think it’s so that in case he forgets who he is, he can look down and be reminded, both by his name written there and by all the chicken grease stains?
Dennis the Menace, 10/23/12
“Drowning, that’s how I’d kill a man,” Mr. Wilson had said. “No fuss, no muss, not a lot of messy blood,” Mr. Wilson had said.
Danger, Pluggers, danger! The only reason anyone from fancy-pants New York City would write into you would be to make fun of your readers and their horrible fashion sense! Do not use their suggestions in your comic! Also, you have terrible crippling osteoporosis.