Amphetamine variants, across a socioeconomic scale running from meth to Adderall, are often used as productivity drugs: they focus the mind and, in the short term, make it easier for you to do work, especially work you don’t particularly want to do. By rejecting his friend’s offer of a little illicit worktime pick-me-up, Dag emphasizes his commitment to decadent leisure: as with food, his interest in drugs is entirely sensual, not utilitarian.
Last week Doc Ock skittered off from his penthouse lair to go enjoy the work of his earthquake machine … somewhere … else? “Somewhere else” turned out to be just straight-up chilling on his couch, presumably in a different lair, while his tentacles dangle forlornly, waiting for the artificial earthquake that never comes. Is he supposed to be watching TV? I bet he’s supposed to be watching TV. Everyone in this strip is always watching TV, all the time, and if there isn’t one there when you need it, it’ll just sort of appear, conveniently.
It’s pretty impressive that, in a strip whose punchline is that Marvin’s family is in such constant terror of his poops that everyone keeps careful track of his digestive velocity, the most unsettling part is actually his smug little smile in panel three. “That’s right, my bowel movements are so vile my own grandfather refuses to deal with them! Heh heh.”
Dennis the Menace, 10/16/14
The Mitchells have done the math and figured out that they can afford to meet their legal obligations as parents without interacting emotionally with their son at all! Look at them, smiling to themselves and not even making eye contact with him. Someone just found out what true menacing really is.
Based on the sad, reverent way Jughead has doffed his cap, I’m going to assume that Archie died in the ring.
Apartment 3-G, 10/15/14
GUYS! Remember how Margo’s mother used to be a fiery Latina/cringe-inducing ethnic stereotype but then sometime last year she became enWASPenated and also stopped dying her hair? Well, this wasn’t a continuity error, but rather a seed planted to set up a future storyline a mere twenty months later! QUICK RECAP OF MARGO’S FAMILY BACKSTORY: her wealthy dad Martin was married to Roberta, but knocked up Gabriella the maid, and then Roberta raised Margo as her own but obviously fell into a pit of seething resentment and went crazy, trying to kill Martin before being shipped off to a private loony bin upstate. Oh yeah, and at some point before that, Martin and Gabriella got back together, sexually. Reconnecting with her former wealthy employer is bringing up her deep-seated Ethnic Shame, I guess? Really looking forward to whatever kind of wacky My Fair Lady situation she’s gotten herself into. Will Martin have to fight her sinister deracinating svengali for her love?
Spider-Man could’ve have made sure this dangerous criminal was put back behind bars, but the guy did help him when their interests briefly aligned, so he’ll just settle for brutally knocking him unconscious! This is actually a step up from his usual complete failure to achieve anything, but it’s still a dick move on multiple fronts.
Wizard of Id, 10/15/14
Probably the best perk of being a syndicated newspaper comic is that if you get tremendously smug about coming up with a terrible bit of pun-esque wordplay, everyone gets to know about it.
Sally Forth, 10/3/14
True Story: Sally Forth is the comic strip that first got me thinking seriously about comics time, the phenomenon by which characters in a long-running comic stay basically the same age, but the cultural signifiers surrounding them also stay current which implies that not only their present but their past is slowly moving forward through the space-time continuum. Because it’s hard to notice that strip-time present is changing to match real-life present, you tend to notice this most during flashback sequences, as I did when an early ’00s Sally Forth storyline about Ted and Sally meeting in college featured Ted wearing a Sonic Youth t-shirt. I’d been reading the strip since I was a child, and so obviously Ted and Sally were my parents’ age, and this blew up everything I thought I knew.
Anyway, something about this particular storyline, about Sally and Alice meeting for the first time twenty years ago, has been nagging at me all week, and I finally put my finger on it: Alice is in fact sporting 1994′s hottest haircut, the Rachel, which works great for the milieu but makes the fact that her current-day character model still has the same Mid-’80s Business Lady Hair that she’s always had seem even stranger.
SUPERHERO: “I’m trapped! I’ve got to use my superpowers to escape!”
[SUPERHERO tries for, like, thirty seconds]
SUPERHERO: “Well, that didn’t work. Time to resign myself to death!”
THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN!!!!!!!!!!!
Beetle Bailey, 10/3/14
It’s funny because you can tell the chili is too hot because it’s on fire and also Beetle is literally cringing in pain and his face-flesh is covered with horrible burns