Wizard of Id, 11/17/14
Happy 50th birthday, Wizard of Id! You’ve spent half a century churning out quasi-medieval whimsy to the delight of several, and show no signs of stopping, so by all means let your mildly beloved characters pause and take a bow. Many of today’s other strips also paid tribute to this testament of syndicated comics longevity!
Mother Goose and Grimm, 11/17/14
Mother Goose and Grimm decided to celebrate Wizard of Id’s penchant for using the literal torture of human beings as a punchline. I was going to say that torture was “a big part of the Wizard of Id brand” but that was a little uncomfortably on the nose.
Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 11/17/14
Looks like all this devilish wizardry in the newspaper is tempting Hootin’ Holler’s youth into lives of service to satan! This is what you get when the federal gummint overstretches its reach to outlaw local traditions like stoning blasphemers.
Family Circus, 11/17/14
The Family Circus rather ungraciously implies that the strip is best enjoyed by babies and other illiterates.
Meanwhile, Dagwood doesn’t even bother to acknowledge the cake-gratulations (I JUST INVENTED THAT, © AND ™ JOSH FRUHLINGER, DO NOT STEAL) this bakery is offering because he’s so focused on buying his wife precisely the gift that he wants to eat.
Hi and Lois, 11/17/14
Finally, the Wiz looms in the background in panel two here as some sort of pop art painting, as Chip realizes that his parents’ dysfunctional marriage will forever compromise his ability to love.
Some strips did bravely ignore this important industry anniversary, however:
Judge Parker, 11/17/14
Our heroes in Judge Parker have decided to hunker down and get as drunk as possible, in the hopes that once they sober up all their problems will have resolved themselves.
Funky Winkerbean, 11/17/14
And Funky Winkerbean promises that the next week will consist entirely of hardcore Bushka family sex scenes. Stay tuned!
Rex Morgan, M.D., 11/16/14
In addition to the genuinely hilarious “Sarah is adopted by a lovable/wealthy mob family” plot we’ve got going on in Rex Morgan, we also have a “June gets involved in petty academic squabbles” plot that is 100% non-hilarious, which is why I’ve barely mentioned it to date. But today it’s all been resolved! See, the vaguely sympathetic character (?) had a heart attack, and the vaguely unsympathetic character (?) saved her life! This will cause all conflict to fade away and bygones to be bygones, etc., which will make it super awkward that the Morgans’ friend/employee Becka just quit her job in a huff over the conflict.
In addition to proving that there’s no argument that can’t be resolved by a minor cardiac event, today’s strip gives us some red-hot imperious Morgan privilege action. “Out of the way, please! We need to get this woman to a hospital right away! Her life is at stake!” “I’m a friend!” “OH OK THEN”
B.C. and Momma, 11/16/14
The primitive hominids of B.C. have apparently reached a new stage in sapience, understanding that other forms of life may have the ability to feel pain and fear, just as they do. Meanwhile, Momma is disappointed that her son’s blundering has stymied an opportunity for bird-slaughter.
Panel from Judge Parker, 11/16/15
Sorry, other newspaper comics creators: nothing you publish this week will be funnier than this panel, in which uber-rich Abbey and Sophie realize they’re living their worst nightmare. “We’re trapped … in a trailer park … with poors! NOOOOOOOOOO”
Everyone knows that Crankshaft rests on twin pillars that I like to call the “two Ms”: malapropisms and misanthropy. The strip’s really been leaning on the former for the past week or so, with “punchlines” that have involved the words and phrases “painted themselves out on a limb,” “battle-ax states,” and “electrical college.” But this I decree to be not up to snuff. “Nasal” derives via French from the Latin “nasus,” and “nose” from the Old English “nosu,” and both of those come from the same ultimate Indo-European root. They’re basically the same word, in other words, with just the vowel shifted a bit, which means this is unacceptably lazy wordplay. The whole point is to mash unrelated terms together! And you’re pointing to your nose! As if we’re incapable of figuring out what “nosal passages” might refer to! Come on, get it together, Crankshaft.
Herb and Jamaal, 11/12/14
“One of those new cashing devices on your phone,” on the other hand, is perfect. It is an amazing example of someone trying to refer to a technological advance who’s heard about mobile payment systems but doesn’t understand anything about how they work and has zero intention of doing any research about them. Never change, Herb and Jamaal. You keep doing you.
Judge Parker, 11/12/14
Oh, boy, that chainsaw-weilding maniac I ordered has arrived, and in just three weeks, which in Judge Parker is a unit of time so fleeting it can only be recorded with the most delicate scientific instruments! I had neglected to order Sam Driver’s washboard abs, but I approve of the gender-inversion of the usual horror movie trope where sexy ladies take off their clothes and then are gruesomely hacked to bits. (This trope will be further inverted when, instead of being gruesomely hacked to bits, Sam will be handed a substantial sum of cash for no real reason.)