Gasoline Alley, 2/18/14
Oh, hey, Gasoline Alley! I haven’t been bothering you to keep you up with Gasoline Alley, so here’s the deal: the government agents called in to try to figure out how Walt could possibly still be alive were followed by a newspaper reporter, for whom Walt spun a fanciful tale of having discovered the Fountain of Youth in an Egyptian tomb, though given his current state of decrepitude it would’ve been more realistic if he had claimed to have found the Fountain of Eternal Life That Keeps Your Aged And Increasingly Frail Body Alive Beyond Its Natural End Point. Anyway, once word got out people, reacted pretty much as I explained they would when Six Chix did a Fountain of Youth joke, only the canny Walt is using the opportunity to personally profit from others’ gullibility. Should be all fun and games, until the angry mob tears him to bits!
Six Chix, 2/18/14
Speaking of Six Chix, today’s Six Chix has an important lesson for us: that no matter how hard life gets, we should marshall our resources and just hang on and endure and wait for the one thing in life that we want more than anything in the world, which will probably kill us.
Dick Tracy, 2/18/14
Speaking of things I haven’t been bothering to keep you up with, Dick Tracy exists! I’m going to continue to not bother to keep you up on the plot, but I do want to point out that this lady with the off-the-shoulder sweater has been in the strip repeatedly for weeks and this is the first we’ve seen that she goes around barefoot in tattered jeans all the time. Is this what Dick Tracy thinks a hippie looks like? Probably! Anyway, “You see, as Mother Earth’s creation, I must touch her” is a good thing to say to someone if you don’t want them talking to you ever again.
Slylock Fox, 2/18/14
As you all should know, I’m very interested in the moment when the Slylockverse was born, when the animals rose up and overthrew the humans who had reigned over them for far too long. We often catch glimpses of this in the Six Differences strips, though today’s isn’t particularly subtle: a bear, probably a juvenile by the size of him but still plenty big and strong, has burst through the front window of this suburban home, and is about to just start up and mauling some people.
Funky Winkerbean, 11/15/13
I don’t know why, but I was under the impression that Lisa’s Forbidden Diary, the one that will help Les get inside his late wife’s head and unlock her cinematic secrets, was from, like, a time in her life when she and Les weren’t married and spending all their time together. Turns out nope! It’s just a record of all the stuff that Les probably would’ve known if he’d been paying attention at the time. Anyway, the very first passage Les reads consists of Lisa making a clunky joke and then noting smugly that the people she made it at didn’t seem to get it, probably because they weren’t smart enough. “That’s my girl,” Les thinks, smirking in her memory, smirking because she cannot. “That’s my girl.”
So it took me a while to figure out exactly what’s going on here, mostly because Heathcliff’s jeans have been colored the exact same shade of orange as his fur, and I was going to berate the syndicate colorist for doing this, but really, has Heathcliff ever worn pants before? Wouldn’t his sudden decision to do so cast an unflattering and frankly disturbing light on the years of pantslessness that led up to this point? Anyway, what’s going on here is that Heathcliff, who is wearing jeans that are the exact same shade of orange as his fur (and, side note, imagine leaving the house wearing only garments that precisely matched your own skin tone, imagine how everyone would look at you in mingled fascination and horror), is no-hands eating a turkey leg, and gorged himself to the point of bursting his pants button at exactly the right time for said pants button to hit a dog in the face. It seems like an awful lot would have had to go exactly right here for this plan to work out, but I guess Heathcliff is bored with his usual dog-harassment and wanted to take on a real challenge, you know? “He gets them with girth” says a nearby child, to give an example of another thing I’d rather not think too much about.
Dick Tracy, 11/15/13
I’m sorry, did you think Dick Tracy was an anachronistic square-jawed fascist wholly unfamiliar with American pop culture? Dick Tracy wants you to know that he’s cool, or at least was cool, back in the late ’70s and early ’80s. You know, back when he was young, taking in the post-punk and early new wave scenes in New York, hanging out with all those guys before they were famous, doing coke in the bathroom at CBGB with Patti Smith, what have you. Later he had them all arrested, of course.
Rex Morgan, M.D., 11/15/13
You guys, there is literally nothing Rex Morgan likes hearing better than “it’s going to cost them triple,” especially when the person reaping those tripled costs is a member of the Morgan family whose finances Rex is responsible for. Look at how pleased he is in that third panel, to hear about all the money his lawyer will be extracting from a local nonprofit arts organization! I’ve literally never seen him so happy. Just for comparison, this is the face he makes when a patient thanks him profusely for saving his life:
Mark Trail, 11/15/13
I take back what I said yesterday about the Mark Trail bug talk being boring — at least, boring in some conventional sense. Now I think it’s boring in a fascinating sense, like a five-hour Central European art house film where a village is increasingly infested with flies that represent the legacy of Communism or maybe just man’s own inherent corruption, and the inhabitants endure the plague with grim stoicism. There’s a shot of several flies on an old man’s face that goes on in silence for nearly two minutes. “Is he ever going to brush them off?” you wonder. He does, eventually. But they come back again a moment later, and he realizes that swatting them away was futile. The moose may seek shelter, but humanity has the self-awareness to know that it’s all hopeless.
So ends the Fall 2013 Comics Curmudgeon fundraiser. Don’t forget the “Donate” button over there on the left, for late contributions or whenever the spirit moves you. Sincere thanks to everyone!
“Astella! She — is dead!”
“Yes, and tastefully off-panel, with wisps of smoke wafting from the charred remains of her once-lovely face. Beautiful she was, Astella, and cunning! But in the end, neither quality could save her, because she lacked the experience and common sense to realize that her gun had become …. Hey waitaminute, T — why are we here, again?”
“Free Rosa and capture El Cóndor.”
“Oops. Sorry, my bad.”
Dick Tracy, 10/18/13
And it’s starting to rain!
Hey doofus, in what sense do you “know how to pilot” the Space Coupe if you can’t make it go where you want, or at the very minimum make it not go where you don’t want? Mmmmm?
Gil Thorp, 10/18/13
But that won’t stop Milford running back Chip Visci and linebackers Omari Troy and Troy Costello — touchdown!
I sincerely and unironically admire this strip’s fidelity to its team rosters. Players come in as freshmen, move up the ranks, sometimes transfer in and out, graduate, and sometimes come back. Some but not all play multiple sports. Seasons start in approximately real time, and the first weeks of each arc [football, basketball, baseball] present the roster so readers can follow along at home. That is some serious attention to craft, right there. We saw something similar in Funky Winkerbean a while back, when a character showed up to correct a minor continuity lapse revealed by publication of a 1970′s compilation.
Rex Morgan, M.D., 10/18/13
June is intrigued by this talk of mariticide: “Say, why don’t I stop by and ask the wife to tell me exactly how she did it? More moss, dear?”
Apartment 3-G, 10/18/13
Bad Girl Tori doesn’t just defy authority – she defies gravity. And mocks fashion with her signature reverse combover.
Program note: just a reminder that Comments of the Week are delayed until Josh’s return on Sunday, or maybe Monday, whatevs.
– Uncle Lumpy