Judge Parker, 7/6/14
Oh boy oh boy, we’ve reached the best part of any Judge Parker storyline: the part where the smug, upper-crust protagonists get paid. Remember last year when Neddy befriended do-gooders Ross and Thalia and also invested in their dubious water filtration scheme, and Ross supposedly got kidnapped in Niger and it looked like maybe it was all a scam, but it turned out it wasn’t and our heroes were able to call in some shadowy black-ops extraction team to save him? Well, Neddy just got her first check for her trouble. Plus interest! Damn, it feels good to be a gangsta.
Speaking of gettin’ paid, remember how April’s dad Abbott had gone down to his heavily armed Yucatan jungle compound, to die? Well, apparently that’s for suckers, so he’s going to come back to the states and be Judge Parker Senior’s highly paid script consultant/the strip’s wacky neighbor instead. Come on board, Abbott! There’s room on this gravy train for everybody!
A good strategy for writing a comic strip is to take a joke your 10-year-old nephew heard in school, but then have one of your characters describe it, ashen-faced, as a terrible nightmare he had, to emphasize the intrinsic horror of the narrative.
Panel from Spider-Man, 7/6/14
Now that Spider-Man has been displaced from his super-heroic role by Doc Ock, Peter needs to find new employment — so why not as a mashgiach? “Wait, was this cow butchered improperly? My trayf-sense is tingling!”
Family Circus, 7/3/14
Man, you guys, those are some glum-looking Keane Kids right there. Just alone in that featureless room with the cat. How do we get out? is the one question that animates their minds. Not just out of the room — though they want to get out of the room, of course — but out of their heads, out of their family, out of their lives. They’ve seen the antics of cats and dogs on the computer screen, obviously, and they wonder: what about the giggling humans in the background? Do they make money, somehow? Do they live exciting, dynamic lives, lives not spent in some room with a white rug and cream walls and no art? Could Kittycat be their ticket to that life? Too bad Kittycat doesn’t share their ambition, their desperation. Kittycat likes the featureless room. Kittycat just wants to take a bath, then maybe a nap.
“Thanks for getting my car back, Doctor Octopus! It’s, uh, all pretty smashed up and undriveable now, but I appreciate the thought. At least that guy didn’t successfully heist it!”
Hey you guys, I know I’ve been super remiss in keeping you up to date on Luann’s queasy-making erotic stylings! Anyway, today in Luann’s queasy-making erotic stylings: Gunther’s mom wants Gunther to make good on his spontaneous and instantly regretted boast that he was going to move with Rosa to Peru so she can have the house to herself, for sex. It says a lot about Luann that Quill/Gunther’s mom is the least revolting pairing the strip has offered us in years.
Slylock Fox, 6/9/14
Do it, Max, Sly said to Max, silently, with his eyes. Do what you have to do. The irony was palpable: he was, after all, a fox, and there was a time when everyone knew that foxes had to be free, and the awful truth that they would chew through their own flesh and bone to escape a trap became a cliche. Slylock, who like all his anthropomorphic brethren had no memory of the Before Times, couldn’t appreciate the little joke, but presumably Count Weirdly could, presumably that was why he had set up this macabre little scene in the first place, why he had shackled Sly up in a room with a mouse-sized open window, left that saw out where Max could find it. In fact, the more you thought about it, the more obvous the many layers of irony Weirdly had baked into this sick little scenario became: the sudden Emergence of Earth’s animal life into sapience had nearly wiped out the human race, and forced poor holdouts like Weirdly into inaccessible fortresses, but Slylock now had too much cognitive power to free himself from a trap the way his kin could before, too much ability to understand the consequences of his own actions, to foresee the agony and the blood, to bring himself to do it. But he knew that if he remained in Weirdly’s captivity, worse would happen, much worse. So he had no choice but ask his best friend to do the unthinkable, to place the the sharp steel against his flesh and begin to … oh, wait, what? The eye hook is made of some different material? Haha, yeah, sure, that’d work too. That Count Weirdly, always forgetting some crucial detail! Ha!
Rex Morgan, M.D., 6/9/14
The whole underlying point of this endless Rex Morgan, M.D., Sarah plot is that Sarah is a frighteningly precocious adult-child and everyone around her is in a state of mortal terror at all times. They’re so terrified, in fact, that they never actually call her on any of her shenanigans, which is why the pushback she’s suddenly getting is completely fascinating to me. Either she’s going to shatter at the first sign of direct confrontation in her life, or this young man’s going to be a smear of gore with a few bits of blond crewcut in a manner of minutes.
YES, Dock Ock! It’s not enough that Spidey be shown up, he must also be MERCILESSLY HUMILIATED! More taunts, I say!