Mark Trail, 2/12/15
Hey, guys, remember back in October when Mark and Cherry got in some weird out-of-context longbow practice? Well, consider today to be context: provided. You could say there’ve been two Chekov’s Bow and Arrow Sets in this storyline: the first one placed on the metaphorical wall when Mark and Cherry did a little target practice back in October, and the second in panel one, when there turned out to be a bow and arrow just neatly propped up on this boat’s deck for no reason anyone has bothered or will bother to explain.
How long has Abe Lincoln’s reanimated corpse been shambling among the living? At least since 1928, which was the last time he was able to pour liquid down his rotting gullet. Since then, anyone encountering this terrifying presidential zombie has presumably fled from him, screaming, in those few times when he stumbled into the light. Only Francis and his mother are caring — or foolish — enough to offer this unnatural history-golem their hospitality.
I’ve spent the maximum amount of time my own sense of dignity allows me to spend trying to parse a joke out of this Crankshaft and have concluded that … there really isn’t one? That doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it, though. If you don’t like seeing a slouching, sad-faced Ed Crankshaft admitting to his daughter that he’s slowly dying, you and I are very different people.
I know what the joke in this strip is, though! I guessed it right away! The joke is that Marvin smells like feces, all the time, and everybody knows it.
Mary Worth, 2/1/15
The Fates were an eerie presence in the Greek religious world: older than the Olympian gods, in some tellings, and outside of their control, they implacably marked out the time we had on Earth, and were worshipped in shrines in underground caves. It stands to reason that Mary Worth would be among their number. Go, Hanna! Propitiate her! Give thanks to her, lest she surreptitiously cut your string too soon to allow you to enjoy your newfound love with Sean!
I was actually pleasantly surprised and intrigued that Marvin did a Mark Trail-style nature education strip today! I was unpleasantly unsurprised when it devolved into a joke about Marvin stewing in a diaper full of his own feces, much to everyone’s disgust.
You know, sometimes, when it comes to Marvin, I feel like something of a scold. I mean, the poop joke has a long and honorable tradition across cultures. I like poop jokes. I make poop jokes. So why does the constant steaming stream of poop jokes in Marvin make me react with such humorless horror? I think today’s strip answers that question pretty well, which is that they’re not funny, and are actually pretty revolting above and beyond the whole poopiness aspect of it. Like, does anyone anywhere enjoy the image of a baby gleefully shoving brown (brown!) food down his maw while thought-balloon-boasting that he’s shitting at the same time? Do grandmas chuckle and cut out this strip and hang it on their refrigerator, because they like the image of organic matter going into one end of a human and coming out the other in a sort of awful continuous flow? No. I’m guessing no. I’m hoping no. Please, please, let the answer be no.
Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 1/10/15
“Haw haw! No, but seriously: we’re going to keep on murderin’ each other for no good reason, just like the biblical patriarchs.”
I have a hearing aid, and one of the best things about it is the ability to turn it off. I’m not deaf and this doesn’t envelop me in a cone of silence or anything, but in public situations when I’m hearing conversations I don’t want to hear, it just kind of takes the edge off, you know? Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that having hearing deficits is no picnic, but you always have to look on the bright side, and having an excuse to willfully misconstrue sexual advances from pluggers is a very, very bright side.