Therapy is always, always terribly misrepresented in fiction, because why do any research on various treatment modalities currently in use when you just want someone to have a plot-advancing revelation and/or a sexy affair with a therapist? Still, even by those standards this is pretty dire. “Instead of just bluntly asking you what you think of Jeff’s mother, we’re going to play a ‘word association’ game to tease out attitudes buried deep within your subconscious, attitudes that you might keep hidden even from yourself. OK, here’s the first word I want you to give me your associations for: ‘Jeff’s mother.'”
Rex Morgan, M.D., 3/12/16
A fun way to think about Rex Morgan, M.D., plots is that many of them are about people’s petty personal problems that Rex gets dragged into, mostly against his will. Like when an ugly family squabble broke out a funeral, and Rex made this face about it! This week, Rex just wanted somebody to sell him a house full of valuable antiques at below market value, and all of the sudden he has to hear about the bitter fallout from some neighborhood elder love affair. At any rate, this certainly puts Franco’s claims that when it comes to the house he “knows every nail” and “the basement fills with water” in a new light, especially if you’re the sort of person who likes to look for double entendres in soap opera comic strips, which I very much am!
Gil Thorp, 3/12/16
This Gil Thorp basketball season storyline continues to be snoozeville. There is definitely an interesting plot to be wrung from “straight but not-entirely-gender-conforming female student athlete navigates teen romance” but this one 100% isn’t it! Today’s strip at least promises some sort of off-court fracas to liven things up. “I think that was the Milford kid we were hollering at the other night. Did you guys bring some throat lozenges? Because we should holler at him … some more.”
Beetle Bailey, 3/7/16
So after a minute or so I gave up on trying to parse Sarge’s dialogue here as a joke, and then maybe 45 seconds after that stopped trying to parse it as actual sincere advice, and finally settled on just trying to figure the contexts — geographic, professional, social, whatever — in which today’s strip is taking place. Like we know from previous strips that Sarge has an office, though this one is looking more Endless Void-y than usual. But has Beetle just kind of … wandered in? To get weird, incomprehensible platitudes? From his commanding officer, who is reading them off a piece of paper, or possibly just holding up a blank piece of paper? I’m really going to have to grapple with the content of this joke to figure out what’s happening, aren’t I?
Mary Worth, 3/7/16
Aww, isn’t this sweet! Mary and Jeff are going to the Bum Boat … their place! And after that, they’ll be crashing every funeral they can, or at least I assume so based on Mary’s outfit. (In Santa Royale, crashing funerals is the closest you can get to hitting all the hottest goth clubs.)
Marvin’s usual M.O. is to mine laffs out of the title character’s constant pooping and peeing, which is gross but has a shred of respectability because, after all, he’s a baby! Pooping and peeing in a diaper is like a huge part of babies’ whole deal! But now we see the slippery slope we’ve been on all this time: if it’s OK to joke about Marvin and his butthole and what comes out of it, why not joke about his dad’s butthole now too, huh? Why not? Can you give me one good reason why not? Basic human decency, you say? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Rex Morgan, M.D., 2/29/16
FYI, guys, Rex Morgan, M.D., isn’t just about people giving Rex and his family money. It’s also sometimes about wacky old people! Like remember when a pair of demented seniors wandered away from a nursing home and made a small-time drug dealer’s life miserable? Or when an elderly brother-sister pair won the lottery, with hilarious results? Anyway, it looks like Rex has finally been bullied into buying that house in town, and sure, it’s in the leafy, huge-mansion part of town, but it’s also in the cranky, argumentative old people part of town! The next few days should give us plenty of the great Grimacing Rex Reaction Shots I crave.
Mary Worth, 2/29/16
[Mary Worth at the airport newsstand]: “People? Oh, my, dear, between you and me, it’s very difficult to keep up with multiple celebrities these days. Who has the time, really? No, one copy of Person, please.”
Hi and Lois, 2/29/16
I mean, you don’t want to do it so often that it becomes Funky Winkerbean-esque self parody, but if you want to end your gag-a-day strip once in a while with a son snidely reminding his father about the grim banality of his adult life, and the father just stares sullenly into space with his arms crossed across his chest, I’m not going to complain.
“I pee on it! I pee all over my phone! My phone is covered in urine. I’m a baby, but I’m depicted as having adult-level cognitive abilities, and, for some reason, I own a mobile phone, but I still pee and poop in my pants!”
“Ha ha, get it? Because of the ice cream flavor? Anyway, the actual story is that I was very drunk.”