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Comics archive! Slylock Fox

He had a good run fly

Slylock Fox, 11/5/14

In Herodotus’s Histories, the Athenian statesman Solon explains to King Croesus that to his mind Tellus of Athens was the most fortunate man who ever lived, and the brothers Kleobis and Biton are tied for second. Key to their ranking, Solon explains, is that all three not only lived lives that were universally well-regarded, but died immediately after performing their most praiseworthy deed, leaving no awkward fall from grace or aftermath to mar their reputation. (This is meant to contrast with Croesus, whose long and largely successful reign ended in conquest by the Persians, and probably with Solon himself, who lived long enough to see the political system he established in Athens overthrown.)

Our plucky fly here does not, perhaps, qualify as fortunate under Solon’s definition, as his life is about to end ignominiously in a heron’s gullet. But as a tiny insect, he really has no reputation to sully, so perhaps in assessing his life and death, we should instead focus on his inward emotional state and sense of self-worth. He is clearly on top of the world after having dodged not one but two predators and left them steaming mad in his wake. Hopefully his death will be instantaneous and he will go out on top, with that ludicrously adorable grin on his face.

Dennis the Menace, 11/5/14

Bald, tiny, spindly-legged Joey lives in constant fear of one thing: that someday someone will discover that he’s not a human boy at all, but rather an ageless goblin who has escaped his eternal home in the Deep Forest to live among us here in the Realtime Cities. Which of the Tall Ones’ terrifying devices will be the one that reveals his secret? You can never be too careful!

Apartment 3-G, 11/5/14

Guys I know I keep harping on this bizarre lunch but it keeps being flabbergasting that this was allowed to happen. There’s no wine. There’s no custard. They aren’t even sitting at a table. They are blatantly walking around in somebody’s living room. Is this a shared delusion? An aggressive Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf-style impov game, with neither party willing to blink? What is even HAPPENING heeeeeere

Mostly maulings

Panels from Slylock Fox, 10/26/14

Today’s Slylock Fox Six Differences puzzle takes place in that awkward period after the animals achieved sapience but before they had truly taken over the Earth. Our grumpy park ranger’s face may bear the scowl of prejudice, but his cause is legit: if this bear can now think and reason like humans, shouldn’t he be subject to the same law? Eventually the animals would develop their own cargo cult legal system in response to these issues, but at this moment, I assume that, despite his newfound intellectual powers, the bear here is still more than happy to meet aggression animal-style, with his claws.

Dennis the Menace, 10/26/14

At last, Dennis the Menace has shattered the unspoken rule that all characters in the daily comics must be gentiles! We learn a valuable lesson here today: that little Jewish children and little Christian children can be friends, so long as neither of them understands any of the theology behind their various holidays and just think of them as “that thing we celebrate in [insert season here],” and also agree to come together at the end of October to worship Satan. (Side note: I’m going to accept as canon the clear implication in today’s throwaway panels that Margaret is a well-known anti-Semite.)

Mary Worth, 10/26/14

There are lots of good reasons to wish that Frank Zappa was still alive, and somewhere on that list is my desire to see what he’d think about having a quote almost certainly incorrectly attributed to him used to try to bully an old woman in Mary Worth into an assisted living facility.

Six Chix, 10/26/14

Ha ha, it’s funny because the scalpel blades are breaking off still embedded in the patient’s flesh! There’s so much blood! So much hilarious, hilarious blood!

Momma, 10/26/14

Tina had sometimes resented the fact that her rift with her mother-in-law meant that she and Thomas didn’t get invited to many family gatherings with his brother and sister. But then, she reflected, if she had been at the house that day, she would’ve been mauled to death by the cold, thirsty bear-dog-things, just like the rest of Thomas’s family.

Crock’s bar for “whimsical” is set pretty low

Slylock Fox, 9/22/14

We’ve seen this courtroom drama before, and back then I was interested in the sad picture it painted of the animal justice system: the injured Slylock meekly giving his testimony, almost cringing as the bull and his sharp-toothed lawyer grin confidently, secure in the knowledge that this case is going their way despite the facts. Today I’m more intrigued by those facts, or at least the presentation of them here, and what they say about the post-animapocalytic world. Are we meant to understand that the Great Change altered so many things about the world’s bovines — not only making them sapient, but also transforming them from quadrupeds to bipeds and granting them front-facing stereo vision to boot — and yet still left them color blind? Moreover, how exactly did the entirely human urban legend about bulls being enraged by red come to be believed by animal-dom at large? Were images of bullfights perhaps used during the Bestial Revolution to rile up anti-human sentiment? At any rate, this provides more evidence that Slylock Fox takes place in the first generation of so of the post-human reality, as the animals are slowly learning about each other … and about themselves.

Crock, 9/22/14

Congratulations, Crock: for a strip with exceptionally crude art, you’ve sure managed to pack a lot of deeply unsettling emotion in the face of the Legionnaire in the second panel here. Does Butt Stew contain meat from a butt, or stuff that came out of a butt, or something even more disturbing? You don’t want to know, but he wants to spend the whole rest of the afternoon grinning smugly about just how much you don’t want to know.

Apartment 3-G, 9/22/14