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Comics archive! Dick Tracy

Friday quickies

Dick Tracy, 3/6/15

Ever since Mike Curtis and Joe Stanton took over Dick Tracy a few years back, the gore factor has been diminished considerably. Still, you can’t take over a storied franchise like this and ignore core aspects of its brand, which include characters staring admiringly at a villain’s brains splattered all over the floor.

Mary Worth, 3/6/15

“Let’s walk into our apartment … together! At last, it’s mine! And I didn’t have to wait three years! I didn’t have to wait at all! Hoo ha ha! HOO ha ha! HOO HA HA!” [sinister laughter continues for an uncomfortably long time]

To be fair, every villain Dick Tracy encounters is a hideous mutant

Funky Winkerben, 1/25/15

Welp, the Dick Tracy-Funky Winkerbean crossover is wrapping up without a single person dying in a hail of bullets, and I for one am pretty disappointed about it. I do like the words of life wisdom that Holly and Dick are trading here, though. Maybe, just maybe, you shouldn’t immediately judge (and subsequently arrest and/or shoot for “resisting arrest”) people just because they look “shady,” you know? Maybe you should instead determine their worth based on their enjoyment of cultural production units that you also enjoy. I’m pretty sure that the main character of High Fidelity has the exact opposite of this revelation at the story’s conclusion, which is evidence that he’s grown less shallow as a person, but, baby steps, I guess.

Apartment 3-G, 1/25/15

Apartment 3-G has meanwhile devolved into a full-on Lu Ann dreamscape? “Tommie, why are you leaving the apartment to go to work, in the morning, as the workday starts?” “I’m going to work. Don’t forget to wake up Margo!” “Gasp! Margo is gone!” [stands in the middle of the hallway, nowhere near a door or anywhere where Margo might be expected to be]

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 1/25/15

While details are murky, archaeological evidence seems to indicate that the Polynesian settlers of Easter Island deforested the place after a few centuries there, which meant they were no longer able to build and move the huge moai statues the island is famous for — and, perhaps more importantly, were no longer able to build oceangoing vessels that allowed them to fish, which in turn led to a rapid decline in population. Meanwhile, in Hootin’ Holler, it seems that the residents are setting in motion an ecological catastrophe of their own, unsustainably extracting fuel to power one of the community’s main economic engines (moonshine production) at the long-term expense of environmental resources needed for the other (chicken theft).

Panels from Hi and Lois, 1/25/15

Look, just between you and me, I never really cared for Mad Men, but if the show’s booze-soaked popularity had anything to do with the return of wacky retro “Thirsty is a drunk” jokes in Hi and Lois, then it has done good for this world.

Tales of poop and death

Heathcliff, 1/22/15

Comics are an incredibly conservative art form — not necessarily in a political or ideological sense, but in that they preserve visual tropes from the comics that current artists grew up with, thus sometimes presenting a world that vanished long ago. Thus, just as Dagwood’s suburban neighborhood is lousy with semi-feral dogs, so does Heathcliff view going to the bathroom as a primarily outside activity. This was the the norm for pet cats for most of their millennia-long period of domestication, but with the invention of clay kitty litter nearly 70 years ago, the idea of a cat doing its business inside the house became … well, significantly less worthy of a joke in a cat-themed comic, let’s just say that.

Funky Winkerbean and Dick Tracy, 1/22/15

The intrusion of Dick Tracy into the Funkyverse is having interesting effects on the Funky-space-time continuum. This reality has already been able to accommodate multiple discontinuous time-tracks, as seen by the apparent coexistence of the Funky Winkerbean and Crankshaft timelines 10 years apart, with the one only occasionally bleeding into the other. But now with Dick and Sam in town, the timeline seems to have rapidly bifurcated into two closely linked parallel streams: in one, they crack vaguely wise at one another about comic books; in the other, they growl menacingly about how they totally have the right to just shoot this guy in the gut for “resisting arrest.”