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Soapy horrors

Rex Morgan, M.D., 5/12/12

Oh, hey, what’s going on in Rex Morgan, looks like it’s just Iris still sadly reading her dad’s memoir and AAAH AAAH AAAH AAAH AAAH AAH! In panel one, it seems that Iris’ face has been removed altogether, only to have a weeping grinning one-eyed horror glommed onto the front of her head in panel two. Has there ever been a comic-book supervillain whose origin story involved whisky and grief? Mabel better watch out at that funeral, is all I’m saying.

Gil Thorp, 5/12/12

Gil Thorp’s horror is subtler but still unsettling. I guess that our single parent pitcher has hit or grazed or come close to grazing the batter with the ball, as a response to anti-single-parent bullying? That’s pretty impressive, considering that in panel two the batter was digging in approximately 12 feet away from the empty patch of dirt where home plate is supposed to be. It still doesn’t explain the awful tangle of limbs emerging at impossible angles from the Goshen gal’s looming crotch in panel three.

Spider-Man, 5/12/12

The second best thing about the current Spider-Man storyline is that all the scripted lines in MJ’s play appear to be exactly the same level of corny and awful as Hardy Laurel’s ad-libs, despite the fact that everyone is acting like he’s desecrating Shakespeare. The best thing about the current Spider-Man storyline is how hilariously petulant Peter looks in today’s final panel. I dearly hope this drawing of him is used for all of his non-masked appearances in the strip from now on.

176 responses to “Soapy horrors”

  1. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:29 am [Reply]

    Dog Eat Doug — The lack of Acme® product placement is also a tip-off.

    Candorville — Poor Keith Olbermann has been reduced to making cold calls to guys like Lemont. How the mighty have fallen!

    Wizard of Id — Having the Wizard finally admit that he’s a BEAR is the closest this strip has ever come to depicting an actual non-heterosexual person.

  2. Baka Gaijin
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    Mary, Mary, Mary. The wedding is supposed to be the bride’s day to be the center of attention, not the Meddling-Hag-in-Waiting’s. STFU!

    Alternate Pluggers Caption: As a plugger gets older, his wife knows not to ask him to dance as she knows he’s fused with the chair he sits in 24/7.

    Saturday’s Luann is one time I’m glad Dingo isn’t here. I can only imagine what he’d do with the last panel’s conversation. [spine shiver]

    It appears in Spideyland that Abbott Costello thinks he’s in a panto, not an off-off-off-off-off Broadway play (that’d be “dinner theater in the Catskills” to those who are geographically challenged).

    Erase the kids in Family Circus and I’d swear this is the opening scene to a 70′s porno.

  3. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    I’m surprised at you, Josh. Don’t you recognize award-winning actress Lucy Liu in today’s Rex Morgan?

  4. KreatureFeatures
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    If the citizens of Westview are riled up about a same-sex couple at the prom, just imagine how upset they’ll be when these monstrosities arrive.

  5. Cal
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    RMMD: Dude, does Iris EVER change out of that bathrobe? Or does she just enjoy lounging around in a blue terrycloth robe, for weeks on end? It looks like June has decided Iris shouldn’t be the only one having all the pastel-terrycloth fun and has decided to jump on the bathrobe bandwagon, too. That’ll raise a few eyebrows at the office!

    Luann: Has there EVER been a single panel — even in the most horrifying and disgusting of circumstances — when TJ was NOT grinning manically? What IS it with this cartoonist, that the only Black male character has to also be incessantly happy-go-lucky?

  6. Jocelyn Knockersbury
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    RMMD: Iris’ blue terrycloth robe is the same one every cinematic cop and/or P.I. from 1972 through 1983 wore. I thought Gene Hackman donated it to the Smithsonian, but I guess not.

  7. terrapin
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    GT: The last two panels seem to indicate that the Goshen team has only a general idea how the game of baseball is played. “I know I’m supposed to swing this stick thing and hit a ball or something, right?” They’ll still probably beat Milford.

  8. Mcbain
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:04 am [Reply]

    The “Spider-Man 2″ game features a sequence where our hero has to rescue people from Mysterio in a theater. There’s no joke here, I’m just wistfully reminiscing about the last time I saw something exciting, action-packed, or even somewhat interesting involving Spider-Man and a theater.*

    *Fans of the Broadway show can relax. I’m not knocking it, I just haven’t seen it.

  9. Cloudbuster
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:05 am [Reply]

    @Cal (#5): TJ is black?

  10. Cloudbuster
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    MW: “There were many things that had to be in place for Gina and Bobby to reunite the way they did! There had to be the internet, and Google! All hail Google!”

    A3G: Those beady little things are supposed to be puppy dog eyes? If puppy dogs had eyes like that, about 90% of Queek’s posting content wouldn’t exist!

  11. Mcbain
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    S-M: Hardy’s clearly working off the energy of the audience.

  12. Egg Grevans
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    ASM – Apparently Peter has morphed into the lead singer of April Wine.

  13. Mark B.
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    It’s going to be cool when Iris attends the funeral wearing the blue bathrobe and slugging Jack Daniels directly from the bottle. But the Morgans are too cheap to have Jack, so it’ll probably be Captain Morgan’s. Which will make it extra cool when she does the captain pose on the casket, and falls into the grave with it when the lowering device unexpectedly triggers.

  14. Mark B.
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:14 am [Reply]

    Peter Parker appears to be punching himself in the face. Yeah, that script is bad, but not that bad.

  15. Écureuil Écumant
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    Blondie: J’accuse!

  16. sporknpork
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:18 am [Reply]

    It takes courage to sit on the ground in public in a crotchless pants suit with your shaved vagina exposed.

  17. undeadoranges
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    MY favorite thing about the Spider-man storyline is that the actors do not look at each other while speaking. So avant-garde. Clearly it’s a metaphor for how NONE of us are looking at each other when we talk; we are always looking at the “audience” of our lives. I never expected something so deep in a newspaper Spider-man strip! I feel enlightened.

  18. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:25 am [Reply]

  19. Écureuil Écumant
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:26 am [Reply]

    Love Is: … but not nearly as tight.

  20. Mark B.
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    The thing I like best about the drawing in Gil Thorp is how the batter is wearing her pants old man style, with the belt line pulled up near her ribs. No explanation how they got pulled up 6 inches higher between panel 2 and 3, perhaps she got wedgied by someone, and that’s the reason she fell down instead of a brushback.

    And I also like the fact that she’s looking back at the catcher instead of at the pitcher in the second panel. Interesting batting stance.

  21. Anonymous
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:37 am [Reply]

    Peter Parker, dramatic critic

  22. TheDiva
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    SM: MJ’s shock is not from Hardy’s ad-libbing, which has been well established, but by the fact that she’s either falling through a trap door or suddenly shrunk a foot between panels.

    9CL: 1.) I can’t speak for other women, but from my own experience from pregnancy and pregnancy scares the fear of the answer is nothing compared to the anxiety of worrying what the answer might be, or the understanding that a positive answer is best known sooner rather than later. 2.) Lampshading the stupidity of your plot does not make it any less stupid, Brooke. 3.) You also clearly think Edda’s behavior makes her charmingly flighty and endearing. It does not. It makes her look like someone who should not go out in public unsupervised. 4.) The last panel looks like something out of a 1950s domestic comedy, when implications of spousal abuse were considered funny rather than disturbing.

    A3G: Puppy-dog eyes? Maybe if the puppy was heavily sedated and bored out of its skull…

    FW: “Evil Selfish Teenagers are evil! Even when dealing with Very Important and Serious Issues (which deserve awards) they’re evil and selfish and evil!”

    Luann: At least Anne has the sense to feel bad about her insincerity, you hypocritical perma-grinned freak….

    MW: “Hey Lilac Suit, I wasn’t done talking! Quit trying to steal my thunder–this is my big day!”

    Pluggers lead dull, miserable lives.

  23. Hibbleton
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    JP: No time, judge. I just pulled my emergency ripcord which inflated my boobs and hips to full Parkaverse proportions. You got one hour to get your smug on!

  24. A Woman of a Certain Age
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:56 am [Reply]

    Baby Blues: Hammy learns the Male Creed. Always do a chore so haphazardly that the woman in your life will never ask you to do it again.

  25. Rusty
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:01 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#9): He is black as the night, and Luann is whiter than white.

    Actually, it has been referenced at some point in the strip that TJ is from Argentina or some other place, maybe in South America? I can’t make myself care enough to find the answer. But potentially a person of color, if not technically “black.”

  26. cheech wizard
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    MT – Why shouldn’t Mark be able to get his friend out of jail just by telling the sheriff he’s innocent? This is, after all, a world where Mark can get you thrown in the slammer just by leaving you tied to a tree with a note reading “drug guy” pinned to your shirt. No need for testimony, no evidence, nothin’. Mark’s word is law.

    In fact, I’m starting to think that what we have here is really a story about an all-powerful despot who rules Lost Forest with an iron fist. That would explain his constant look of bemusement as he toys with the minions who feebly attempt to express contrary notions, only to have Mark bring them firmly back into line. It goes without saying that such tyrants have historically kept small, deformed humans for their amusement. Need I say more?

  27. Chyron HR
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    Spider-Man – Of course Peter’s in a snit. When he watches things on his beloved television, they don’t dare to change the words! (Except the F-words, obviously.)

  28. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    CdS: *gigglez*

    Doons: Geezer Butler FTW!

    Lio: Thai kite-fighting does not work that way.

    PBS: *snurk!*

    SBp: no, no you can’t!

    Bizarro: sharing a guest-star with PBS.

    JUMBLE: too easy.

    Mutts: d’aawwwww.

    RwO: *gigglez*

    Retail: nice save, Cooper. boy’s not quite, I say, quite as dumb as he looks.

  29. Señor Tortilla
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    FW – Given these are the same people who support “Lisa’s Legacy Run”, I have ZERO sympathy for them.

    9CL – He used “Anoint the stick” AGAIN? Seriously?

    FC – That is NOT a modern hairstyle. This seems more accustomed to the ’70s or ’80s, given what we’ve seen so far.

  30. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    Love Is . . . marrying a size queen.

  31. Mibbitmaker
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:29 am [Reply]

    S-M (the strip) : We GET it already!!!

    S-M (Josh): It is an improvement — Peter is usually at least that petulant over wifey being in a play at all, what with only Spider-MAN worthy of a career and attention and all of that.

    Ed. Lee: Grandpa Strawsnacker [*] = HATE!


    Archie: The book was due back when this strip first appeared.

    GT: “MRS. Kiser”? That must be the single mom’s mom. Either that, or our single mother isn’t as single as we were lead to believe.

  32. Roger Ln
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:35 am [Reply]

    S-M: Judging by that last panel, this whole Hardy Laurel plotline is actually Stan Lee’s way of complaining about the latest Spider-Man movie adaptation.

  33. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    a lolcat for Sequitur.

    yellow brainmush.

    grumpy tarsier is grumpy.

    cross-over win. (suck it, Bey!)

    so, can I raise enough on Kickstarter for this?

    as seen in MG&G.

    Tetris mod for Poteet.

    The Daily Puppy is a corgi that will mush your brains.

    The Three Barketeers. (my favorite breed, bb,u’s favorite breed, and a corgi!)

  34. Weaselboy
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:46 am [Reply]

    MW: At what point do we stop calling it a pony-tail and start calling it a top-knot?

  35. Ingeld
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:47 am [Reply]

    I find it amusing that Peter Parker is befuddled by a fiction that is filled with corny dialogue and cliches. Perhaps the comic should be changed to: Irony Man.

  36. Arabella
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:52 am [Reply]

    Luann: Regarding whether TJ is black: I rarely see the strip in color, so I don’t know if he appears “shaded” in color strips or not. The Michael Jackson hair style seems to be the only “black” attribute (If you want to assume that MJ was black) I think TJ was intended to be an Eddie Haskell type, hence the curly hair and smarmy grin. So I vote “white”

  37. True Fable
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:54 am [Reply]

    Today would have been Dingo’s birthday, so in honor of Jeff I will snark A3G, Mary Worth, Mark Trail and Spiderman.

    Mary Wrath I like the look of complete surrender in Bobby’s face in the first panel. It’s as if he knew once his bride mentioned Mary’s name, they could just forget about the rest of the reception with its cake cutting and first dance and drunken bridesmaids and even the other people’s toasts. It’s Mary’s day now, bitches. Look, even Gina’s hair surrendered and is just hanging there, giving up any sign of bounce because Mary has sapped the joy out of the proceedings.

    Apartment FU “Don’t you dare look at me with those puppy dog eyes… it makes me hungry for spaniel souffle.”

    Fist O’Justice Theater If Mark Trail really wants to be a successful lawyer, he’s going to have to get a hot rich wife, ratchet up the sanctimonious sneer and figure out how much he’ll be able to make off this deal so its AT LEAST in the hundreds of thousands of dollars if not millions. He’s got the dumb luck and unearned admiration thing going though, thanks to faithfully reading Sam Driver’s (of course best selling) “Unlimited Power, Money and Expensive Toys Through Unscrupulous Practices.”

    The Amazing Guest Villain Just look at that disgusted look on Peter’s face in the last panel! It’s as if he’s come across a beloved childhood icon with awesome power and ordinary worries and real-world problems just like you and me, but is now reduced to just some ineffectual, lazy, whiny prick who evidently considers ham actors in badly written shows to be his arch-nemesis.

  38. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:54 am [Reply]

    *queek does anime figma squee.*

    (link is clean, but note that host site contains nsfw material.)

  39. Apeman
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:05 am [Reply]

    What’s going on in the last two panels of Gil Thorpe? No, seriously, what the hell’s going on? The Goshen batter has one hand on the bat, which is facing forward, while looking back at the catcher. And then that’s supposed to be the same player in the third panel doing what, exactly? We don’t even know for certain if she got on base. Did she just drop down and try to kick the catcher in the shin guards?

  40. Mrs. Kiser
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:10 am [Reply]

    I think he liked having boys to play with…our pleasure…basemen digs in…and goes down.

  41. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:10 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#yy105): “and getting caught in the drain.”

  42. Illustrator Steve
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:14 am [Reply]

    MT – If Mark Trail thinks he’s such a hot-shot advid environmentalist, not to mention conservationist, then he should help the sherrif do everything he can to rid the environment of murerous scum like his friend, Gene!

  43. Baka Gaijin
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:21 am [Reply]

    Does no one in Santa Royale or Lloyd Neck have pruning shears? That pony tail/topknot/monstrosity is too much for Shears at Sears.

    Replace the man in Bizarro with a big dogman and you’d have a Pluggers.

  44. Illustrator Steve
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:24 am [Reply]

    MT – Mark Trail may know how to carry on with conservation, but he sure doesn’t know beans about how to carry on a CONVERSATION!

  45. Fats Pinto
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:25 am [Reply]

    I can’twon’t keep track of the characters in Gil Thorp, so is that Sarah Palin-alike in the first panel anybody in particular or just a Giant Foreground Beaver á la Jack Elrod?

  46. Señor Tortilla
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:26 am [Reply]

    Talk of Dingo again. I have to wander, though: everyone talks about Dingo as if he was a wonderful, funny, and sweet person, but the only thing I’ve ever seen is some rather vulgar snark that was more vulgar than funny (at least the examples I found). But I can understand the “funny” part: it’s kind of like that sex comedy that you may find hilarious, but the other nice things to say about him? I just don’t see it.

  47. aitherion
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:31 am [Reply]

    @Señor Tortilla (#46): Keep in mind that some Curmudgeonites met him in person at the various meetups, and he had a life outside commenting on the blog. Vulgarity doesn’t make one an unkind person.

  48. mstgator
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    @Fats Pinto (#45):

    Heh… yes, the crotchless pantsuit is certainly a nice touch.

  49. Santa Royale With Cheese
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    RMMD: If those two don’t fall into a big naked heap in about 3 more panels I’m changing the channel to something with more action.

    9CL: At best, and this is a stretch here, nobody else thought Edda was that stupid because Brooke wrote the script that way. There were numerous opportunities for other people to ask “are you sure…?” but didn’t, apparently. Sheesh, even the silent stuff with Amos could have shown him gesturing “are you sure…?” but didn’t, apparently.

    Apropos of nothing, I have a book in my collection called “The 38 Most Common Fiction Writing Mistakes (and How To Avoid Them)” which Brooke desperately needs to crack open. Then again, he won an award in 2006 so what do I know?

  50. Illustrator Steve
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    MT – “CAN I see him?”

    “Sure, Mark. But first, just fill out these stacks of paperwork which include separate forms for each branch of our municipal Government that run OUR AREA here in THE SOUTHERN PART OF THE STATE. After completeing the visitation forms please ‘e-mail them to Then, you must schedule yourself to have a blood test. When you receive an ‘e-mail ststing your acceptance as a visitor of murderous scum like your friend, Gene, then you must dress in proper attire, with no metal objects, and can come back between 1:pm and 3:pm on every other Wednesday.Then you simply here wait until your number is called.”

    “Municipal Government? We have one of those? ….ON second thought, Jim, just FORGET it! Go ahead and FRY the guy, It will be a hell of a lot easier!”

  51. Baka Gaijin
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:45 am [Reply]

    @True Fable (#37): Really? Dingo’s Birthday? OK. Here’s a weak homage.

    Ann: “EEEEW. I feel so low and dirty”
    TJ: “What, this is a new feeling for you? You didn’t say that last night in the walk-in, lying on the floor taking my Cleveland Steamer.”
    Ann: “Take me, you grinning infuriating man-child! Give me a Dirty Sanchez to tide me over until our break.”

    Family Circus:
    Thelma: “Where are your all-purpose sneakers?”
    Shoeman: “The RUBBER clad PUMPS?”
    Thelma: “Yes, the RIBBED ones. For my pleasure.”
    Shoeman: “We have a new shipment. Extra strong, goes the distance. Won’t break in the middle of festivities [looks down at melonheads running around] like those 4 times.”
    Thelma: “Oh, yes! Those sneakers, Shoeman.”
    Shoeman: “Do you know what kids like? Aladdin’s Castle.”
    Thelma: “But I don’t have any quarters. Darn that Bill and his tight budgeting. That’s not all that’s tight, Shoeman!” [Thel kegels seductively]
    Shoeman: “The mall pedophile’s working the Hickory Farms kiosk…”
    Thelma: “Warm up that pornstache, Shoeman, I want a ride!”
    Scene closes as Thel herds kids out to Hickory Farms kiosk.

  52. Inexplicable Bear Tongue
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#22): 9CL: It’s not completely absurd to imagine Seth carrying Edda into the bathroom, stripping off her skirt and underwear, against her will and forcing her to urinate on the stick. I wonder if that’s the impression BMcE intended to give.

  53. debussy fields
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:55 am [Reply]

    MW–If this were a movie, my first question would be: How many different actors are playing the part of Bobby? He looks like a different person every time we see him.

  54. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#33): What a great Mother’s Day image!

  55. Mark B.
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:08 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#52): That was my impression of the strip. Kind of disgusting, actually.

  56. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:09 pm [Reply]

    @debussy fields (#53): Yes, and in none of his incarnations does he look even remotely appealing. That’s rather impressive in a weird way.

  57. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:11 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#52): I was fighting so hard to keep that picture from actually forming in my brain. Too late now. BRAIN BLEACH, STAT!

  58. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:16 pm [Reply]

    @True Fable (#37): Nicely snarked!

  59. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:17 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#22): Re 9CL, many thanks. You are so, so right.

  60. Ukulele Ike
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    @Mark B. (#55): That would mean we’re assuming that Seth keeps a pregnancy test kit on hand in their john. Or that he plans to carry Edda over his shoulder, through midtown Manhattan, to the nearest drug store.

    RiR: The color monkeys have determined that Jimbo is drunk in the mid-afternoon. Or that he has recently had his nose punched.

  61. KreatureFeatures
    May 12th, 2012 at 12:25 pm [Reply]

    @Apeman (#39):

    What’s going on in the last two panels of Gil Thorpe?

    I’ve attended hundreds of high school fastpitch softball games, and all batters wear facemasks. So let’s see: no facemask, a freakish reaction to brushback pitch that was never thrown, a left fielder that is at least nine feet tall … that’s three strikes, Gil Thorp, go sit down.

  62. TheDiva
    May 12th, 2012 at 1:07 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#52): You’re right, it is plausible, if only because Brooke’s mind has dark, scary corners even by the standards of the Internet where dark, scary corners of the mind are commonplace.

  63. Nekrotzar
    May 12th, 2012 at 1:09 pm [Reply]

    My guess is that MJ’s next scripted line to Hardy Laurel in this Beckett-esque masterpiece is either “Surely you can’t be serious” or “The hospital? What is it?”

  64. Holly Folly
    May 12th, 2012 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    If spiderman’s newest villain’s plan is to murder every man on earth that isn’t him, I hope he doesn’t have some asinine plan that doesn’t take into account that fact that this universe he would be fighting not just spider man, but all of spider man’s super villains as well. And possibly immortal Thor gods. So really what could go wrong?

  65. tallyHO
    May 12th, 2012 at 1:44 pm [Reply]

    @Weaselboy (#34):
    instead of calling it either of those things, you could call it a ponyboner.

  66. Gringo
    May 12th, 2012 at 1:57 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#52): and forcing her to urinate on the stick

    I believe the correct medical terminology is “forcing her to anoint the stick.”

  67. Notebooked
    May 12th, 2012 at 1:58 pm [Reply]

    The Amazing Cider-Man: Why, Peter, of course he’s rewriting the play on stage! Didn’t you see his expression in panel one? That’s the expression of someone who has mined the hills of his mind and discovered comedy gold. Sure, it may be fool’s gold, but when mixed in with the muddy gravel of the actual play, it still looks better!

  68. commodorejohn
    May 12th, 2012 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    9CL – Well, cross “forced urination” off the list of fetishes yet to be represented in Brooke’s work. Has Pibgorn gotten around to M-preg yet, or is it still too busy with erotic impalement?


    Crock – Wow, Crock is getting dark in its last days.

    Curtis – Diane, your son having the hots for Oprah Winfrey is not grounds to be less concerned.

    DTM – Dennis loathes and badmouths human love and commitment. That’s slightly menacing, I guess.

    FW – The moral: you should stand up for the oppressed, when it falls in line with something you already wanted to do. By this standard, I’m Ghandi!

    HOTC – “There’s always a bigger fish.”

    JP – “God dammit, why should I be expected to do work?

    Mandrake – “I’ve heard…once the Lost Chord begins, it cannot stop until it ends!” And you went ahead anyway. God, you idiots. A world with people this stupid deserves to be destroyed. [*]

    MT – Gene killed Hugo Chavez?

    Momma – Take heart, Tina, one day you’ll successfully poison the hateful old shrew.

    OBH – Thank you, Grandpa, for remembering what was actually being said.

    PBS – *snrk*

    Phantom – Well, I’ll give him this, he’s a try-try-again kind of guy.

    SM – You know, if nothing else, I’d say this is probably the most appropriate level of villainy for Spider-Man to tackle.

  69. Droopy Says
    May 12th, 2012 at 2:47 pm [Reply]

    @gleeb (#108): @Droopy Says (#y77): Reply All: How does this strip stay in print?

    The “artist” works for Fatherland Security. You wanna choose up sides?

    The other side. If Donna Lewis is defending us, it can only mean we’ve been infiltrated by monsters from some unspeakable Lovecraftian dimension and they’ve totally subverted our institutions.

  70. Droopy Says
    May 12th, 2012 at 2:52 pm [Reply]

    @Cal (#5): TJ had a non-grinning panel, back when he realized his stupid advice got Piggyface fired from the WeenieWorld job. But the grin returned when he concocted his plan to avenge the firing by working at WeenieWorld and making Ann Eiffel look like the company’s most successful manager ever. So I guess TJ is just marking time here until the Batman franchise needs a new Joker.

  71. The Real Dan
    May 12th, 2012 at 2:54 pm [Reply]

    “His jet touches down at noon?” Nobody says that! “His plane touches down at noon.” Or, maybe, if you wanted to make the point that he’s incredibly wealthy (which is redundant in Judge Parker) you could say “His private jet touches down at noon.

    Also, as far as that stupid Luann where they were putting holes in the walls to find the brat, how the hell do you NOT check every room in the house before you start tearing it down? What the heck? That’s been bothering me for days now.

  72. Doctor Handsome
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:04 pm [Reply]

    In the comic books, Spider-Man has gone toe-to-toe with the likes of Dr. Doom and Thanos. In the newspaper strip, his nemesis appears to be Jim J. Bullock.

  73. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:05 pm [Reply]


    Hardy Laurel was named after his father, German actor Hardy Krüger:

    How an actor who worked with the likes of Richard Burton and John Wayne could spawn an idiot like Laurel is beyond me.

  74. Rixtremism in the Defense of Libertines
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:25 pm [Reply]

    MW Today Mary is paraphrasing Paul’s treatise on love. She skipped over the faith and hope part, but maybe she’ll circle around to it after she instructs Gina to submit to her husband and to cover her hair (Deo Gratias!).

    MT The deer are unimpressed. Shot? “I saw the best hinds of my generation destroyed…”

  75. Alfred E. Neuman
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:32 pm [Reply]

    GT— The bespectacled lady in panel one is obviously a fan of the old Montreal Expos. Ever since they moved to Washington, she’s been feeling rather crotchety.

  76. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:44 pm [Reply]

    Spider-Meh [Take #2]

    MJ’s shocked expression is the result of Hardy taking out his schlong and whizzing on the audience. (“Tennis Penis, anyone?”)

    Peter, who’s sitting in the front row, is about to find out why Hardy’s nickname is “Golden Arrow”…

  77. UncleJeff
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:48 pm [Reply]

    For all of you who get sentimental on Mother’s Day:
    Little Dog Lost (Sunday version)
    Ladies and gentlemen…Mr. Steve Boreman.

  78. Inexplicable Bear Tongue
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:49 pm [Reply]

    @Gringo (#66): Nah, I was purposefully using the word that would describe what a horribly common woman would do were she in that situation. If BMcE actually read any of the comments from people reading his strip, I’d hope they’d use little details like that to put him on his fainting couch. Sorry dude, Edda’s squatting down and weeing on that thing.

    @The Real Dan (#71): And to address things that have been bothering us, and link it to the discussion I was having:

    9CL: Edie’s husband and Juliette’s presumed father was a youngish high ranking officer in the American armed forces during WWII, who actually stormed the beaches in the D-Day invasion, so no matter how much of a shithead he was, he would be considered a hero for the rest of his life.

    But rather, we find out that Edie fell in love with Juliette’s actual father, who was a Nazi officer who immediately rat-finked on his side when he got captured by the Allies and thrown into a POW camp. (Yeah, I don’t buy the explanation some people give about how he wasn’t “really” a Nazi. I’m sure a lot of Nazi officers, who were specifically put in charge of men in actual battles, upon being captured, “claimed” that they weren’t actually committed to the Nazi cause and that they hated Hitler. And if you don’t shoot them, they’d be more than happy to do your laundry and eat your slop at the POW camp with their underlings.) And Juliette and Edda are thrilled about this discovery, that they sprang from the loins of an unprincipled Nazi traitor rather than an All-American Hero.

    Yeah, it’s been bothering me for a while.

  79. Artist formerly known as Ben
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:55 pm [Reply]

    S-M: Peter may never get the hang of this “being heroic” thing, but his level of weary disdain shows that he just might have untapped potential as a theatre critic. Hey, play to your people’s strengths, Jameson.

    HOTC: Neat twist. It’s interesting that Tatulli has spent the whole week importing the dialogue-free schtick from his other strip.

    Doonz: Sabbath, you say? My money’s on Bill Ward.

    A3G: I’m not seeing puppy dog eyes, but Scott at least does have visible eyes. That’s above average in terms of Bolle drawing stuff that Shulock writes.

    WofI: Okay, I know this isn’t a continuity strip, exactly. Still, claiming that a character has been hibernating all winter when we see him three or four times a week is stretching it.

    FW: Hey, any chance we’ll find out how the couple in question feel about being at the center of protests and counter-protests any time soon? Oh, just wondering.

    C-Shaft: Ancient barely-a-joke followed up by no joke at all. I’m not sure I’m hip enough to be reading this.

    Lockhorns: For what it’s worth, Liz and Dick seem to be enjoying the toy piano stylings of Loretta Lockhorn.

    Luann: Anne Eiffel realizes she’s a character in Luann.

    Archie: Archie’s T-shirt announces his approval of the existence of cars.

    JP: In the first panel, Gloria lets her breasts do the talking. Of course she’s talking to a man who’s none too likely to listen to them.

    MW: Mary is, of course, hoping that Aphrodite or some other anthropomorphic representation of love will appear and say, “Oh no, Mary. It was all your doing. Praise be to Mary.”

    BB: General, everyone knows that you’re a “drink yourself to oblivion before you have a chance to forgive anyone” kind of guy.

    DtM: What I love here is the scowl of hatred on Joey’s screwed up face. Seems his own mother doesn’t measure Oedipal desire, so he’s latched onto Dennis’. “Step away, bespectacled fool! The yellowhaired goddess is mine!”

  80. Victory Garden
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:56 pm [Reply]

    “Anointing the stick” could also be a euphemism for that other adult thing that goes on before you have to take a pregnancy test. You know, the hand jive.

  81. Artist formerly known as Ben
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:57 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#76): Funny, Hardy doesn’t look much like Andy Dick to me.

  82. Dr. Weird
    May 12th, 2012 at 3:58 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#78):

    And Juliette and Edda are thrilled about this discovery, that they sprang from the loins of an unprincipled Nazi traitor rather than an All-American Hero.

    Of course! The Nazi is very artistic, while I don’t recall the American father having any interest in art at all! Art trumps all other things in 9CL, including logic, common sense and human decency!

  83. Santa Royale With Cheese
    May 12th, 2012 at 4:06 pm [Reply]

    @Doctor Handsome (#72): Come to think of it, there was once a Spider-Man/Superman cross-over comic where Spidey wondered what use he’d be compared to Superman. His contribution was to use his webbing to get a coating of Kryptonite dust off of him. (“I never thought my purpose was to be an improvised lint brush.”)

    Now he remembers those days wistfully on the sofa.

  84. Baka Gaijin
    May 12th, 2012 at 4:14 pm [Reply]

  85. Liam
    May 12th, 2012 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    JP-Why should I ask for the moon? I have enough money to buy it.

    MW-Like Gina’s inability to look for Bobby or for Bobby to look for Gina.

    MT-Are you sure it was his gun? I hear that they can make many guns from a single mold.

    Gil Thorp-Those last two panels are heavy with sexual euphemisms.

    Luann-“I would probably feel like you, TJ, if you had a conscience about forcing people to buy things that they don’t want.”

    Lio-Take that Brownie Charles.

  86. kkarenb
    May 12th, 2012 at 4:24 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#79): Re: FW – That is a good point. All this brouhaha, and the couple at the center of it are never mentioned or shown again. Of course, it is highly unlikely that Batiuk would give them emotions – he didn’t even give them names.

    Mark Trail – This has turned into CSI: Lost Forest. I hope the forensics are more believable than the dialogue.

  87. True Fable
    May 12th, 2012 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    @Señor Tortilla (#46): If all you have to judge people by is their snark, then your supposition would have merit. But Jeff was a really wonderful friend who listened and gave thoughtful insight when asked. He was real and genuine and more than just a vulgar commentator on a website.

    AND he made some really hootworthy Mary Worth videos.

  88. True Fable
    May 12th, 2012 at 4:44 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#58): *tips hat* Thank you, my queen!

  89. Gringo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:03 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#85): Lio-Take that Brownie Charles

    Good one.

  90. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:05 pm [Reply]

  91. Señor Tortilla
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:12 pm [Reply]

    @True Fable (#87): I wonder what people think of me solely on the Internet. I mean, I may exaggerate some things on CC, or barter my political views, but is that how people see me? Hmmmm.

  92. Liam
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:26 pm [Reply]

    FW-What? There are homosexuals at this school that want to go to the prom? I am so totally against that but I am against a science quiz even more.

  93. Liam
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:28 pm [Reply]

    RMMD-”It’s a love story gone bad and Love Story was pretty bad to begin with.”

  94. Gringo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:32 pm [Reply]

    By the by, there’s a real-life movie currently in release titled P.O.W.: Portrait Of Wally. I wonder how long until Batiuk has Les Moore grousing about Hollywood leaving its grimy fingerprints all over his Pristine Art again.

  95. Gringo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:33 pm [Reply]

    @Señor Tortilla (#91): Personally, I view you as the counterpart to Senorita Tortilla.

  96. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:39 pm [Reply]

    9 – Oh, how sweet. He’s going to hold Edda over the stick and squeeze. (Do they even have one? Is he going to carry her to the drug store on Thornberry Street?)

    Judge – Talking breast? Take that, giant talking marmosets!

    Liberty Meadows – Too soon.

    love is… …as deep as the first day I read it.

  97. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:40 pm [Reply]

    Phantom – As this guy works up to trying to kill Ernesto a second time, I can only urge him to reconsider his mental definition of the words “my friend.”

    Spider-Man – Lines notwithstanding, the most memorable part of Hardly’s performance would have to be his re-blocking of the scene, delivering every line standing on the apron of the stage, looking directly at the third row and vigorously flapping his arms whenever he speaks. I would hope he occasionally says, “Aw! Aw! AWWW! Great balls o’ fire, I’m bodacious!!”

  98. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:41 pm [Reply]

    @Comcis Fan (#y87): I would hope that the cartoonists realize most of the comments here are good-natured ribbing from people who appreciate comics and wouldn’t bother reading those that they found truly uninteresting.
    For that matter, I still think Crock’s poke at Josh was intended as good-natured, like Fejf’s small digs (et al), and we may feel honored on his behalf that one of a small handful of strips was expended (a Sunday, no less) to be sure of getting it in.

    @Droopy Says (#y89): But I may have figured out why Rusty never gets to go fishing. It’s a hack writing gimmick.
    Troutus interruptus will work for a while, but some day they’ll actually go fishing, and the audience will lose interest and wander off to some less happening strip. They’ll settle on Mary Worth, where she may just be wrapping up the postgame on Gina and Bobby.

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#y103): And ultimately it led him to create the King Kong of the Plant Kingdom… Giant-Size Man-Thing.
    And speaking of Dingo… ! [*]

  99. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:41 pm [Reply]

    Spider-Man – MJ’s reaction to the ad-libbing is pretty damned unprofessional — goggling in horror at everything Hardly says — unless, of course, it’s a musical adaptation of “Shoe,” in which case it’s completely in character.

    @Cal (#5): TJ’s an African-American? But, but that means he’d have to be a human!

    (The thing to remember about TJ is that he intensely hates himself, and everything he says is passive-aggressive, self-directed bitter sarcasm. Eeyore on steroids. Very funny.)

    @undeadoranges (#17): MY favorite thing about the Spider-man storyline is that the actors do not look at each other while speaking. So avant-garde.
    James Thurber was calling that a cliche in, I believe, the late 1920s, in an amusing TNY piece that was reprinted for the first time in the Library of America volume (a tip of the Hatlo Hat to Garrison Keillor for the selection).

  100. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    May 12th, 2012 at 5:42 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#78): re 9, Bill was also somebody who stuck his neck out rather far for Gran, and was apparently rewarded by her making the rest of his life a hell. Yeah, Gran, you’re some kind of wartime hero spy fink, but don’t sit next to me, okay?

    @Señor Tortilla (#91): I wonder what people think of me solely on the Internet.
    I’ve always assumed you to be a walking, talking piece of Tex-Mex cuisine. Probably the same size as a regular person, but I realize now that I’m assuming that part.

    ps – Late posting today because I’m flat on my back, which went out again. I was unconscious most of the day.

  101. Señor Tortilla
    May 12th, 2012 at 6:27 pm [Reply]

    @Gringo (#95): Sadly, Señora Tortilla doesn’t exist yet.

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#100): A giant person-sized burrito? That does sound awesome.

    Anyway, Spider-Man is really boring, like, more than usual. I can’t really improve on Josh’s commentary, though bug-eyed MJ is fun.

  102. Señor Tortilla
    May 12th, 2012 at 6:35 pm [Reply]

    @Señor Tortilla (#29): Whoops, that was yesterday.

    Anyway, so if I understand this correctly: there seems to be a sizable clump of parents who viciously homophobic, but no one at school, even those are neutral on the subject? And “everyone” is prepared to walk out? I mean, if people are that progressive there, why is there only one homosexual couple?

    I’m confused.

  103. Droopy Says
    May 12th, 2012 at 6:59 pm [Reply]

    @Señor Tortilla (#102): Maybe the vast majority of the kids are gay at Westview. How else do you explain why you rarely see a boy and a girl together among the Scapegoats? (I know, I know. Batyuk is incompetent. He’s finally decided to do a story where the kids do more than annoy their teachers babysitters and other adults bored losers, but he can’t quite figure out what kids would do on their own.)

  104. Ukulele Ike
    May 12th, 2012 at 7:12 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#100): 9CL — The Nazi Years: As I remember it, Bill spent ten monastic years (1945-55) in physical therapy, making himself into a muscular perfect-ten Adonis for his eventual reunion with Gran. He didn’t seem to think that she would be out there in New York, you know, having some kind of life. Boyfriends and such. So, while he is a bona fide war hero, he is still a patented Brooke McE goofball.

    His worse failing, in Brooke’s eyes, was taking Gran away to Iowa, where they don’t have th’ opera.

  105. UncleJeff
    May 12th, 2012 at 7:16 pm [Reply]

    #99: “MY favorite thing about the Spider-man storyline is that the actors do not look at each other while speaking. So avant-garde.
    James Thurber was calling that a cliche in, I believe, the late 1920s, in an amusing TNY piece that was reprinted for the first time in the Library of America volume (a tip of the Hatlo Hat to Garrison Keillor for the selection).”

    Groucho Marx in “Horsefeathers” made fun of the same thing done in a popular Eugene O’Neill play of the time. He would say to the other characters “Pardon me while I have a ‘Strange Interlude’.” And then he’d go to the front of the stage and make comments on the scene. I can’t remember the whole thing but I remember the wonderful way he said “baboon” and when he started giving stock quotations like a radio announcer.

  106. Ukulele Ike
    May 12th, 2012 at 7:21 pm [Reply]

    Psssst! It was Animal Crackers!

  107. UncleJeff
    May 12th, 2012 at 7:36 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#106): Drat! You’re right. To take it directly from Wikipedia: “Living with your folks. Living with your folks. The beginning of the end. Drab dead yesterdays shutting out beautiful tomorrows. Hideous, stumbling footsteps creaking along the misty corridors of time. And in those corridors I see figures, strange figures, weird figures: Steel 186, Anaconda 74, American Cane 138…”

    Speaking of Groucho: That “comic” character in ASM reminds me of the George S. Kauffman story where he was talking with a friend in the wings of a Marx Brothers show and suddenly shushed his friend. The man was offended and Kauffman explained that he thought he actually heard Groucho say a line as it was written.

  108. yaoi huntress earth
    May 12th, 2012 at 7:41 pm [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#78): Don’t forget that he convinced Edna to let minor secret information about the Allies slip out with the promise of singing lessons and giving her better info in return. Thus, playing on her selfishness and naivete and get her to possibly betray her country. So we can throw in manipulative jerk into the mix.

  109. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 12th, 2012 at 7:44 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#81): I didn’t realize Andy Dick’s nickname was also “Golden Arrow”! Please tell me more…

    Incidentally, an archer character by the name of “Golden Arrow” also appeared in Fawcett’s Whiz(!) Comics in the 1940s. Which means I made a double pun that absolutely no one — with the possible exception of [Old Man] Muffaroo — would find amusing in the slightest. (And this is why I’ve never managed to snag a CoTW!)

  110. Rixtremism in the Defense of Libertines
    May 12th, 2012 at 8:24 pm [Reply]

    @kkarenb (#86): …he didn’t even give them names.

    Adam and Yves.

  111. Liam
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:18 pm [Reply]

    @Pozycjonowanie stron (#111):

    Got a link to your site, Spambot?

  112. Liam
    May 12th, 2012 at 9:20 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#73):

    I see that last name and I think of another Kruger. Hardy Laurel the bastard son of 10,000 bad comics.

  113. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 12th, 2012 at 10:16 pm [Reply]

    @Santa Royale With Cheese (#49): I believe that his award came from work he did before he got a bad case of TIFE (Too Important for Editors).

    As for Seth and the pee sticks, given how he has already handsewn Edda’s wedding dress, and has a spare room set aside for a nursery (in New York, no less, on a dancer’s salary) with plans already in mind for what it would look like (take that, Scott from A3G), it seems perfectly reasonable to me that this baby-crazed, het-centric gay dude would have not just one, but several different brands of pregnancy test just casually hanging out in his medicine cabinet.

  114. Alison
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:16 pm [Reply]

    “Spider-Man”: Why don’t they just fire this guy if he won’t stick to the script? Is there some reason he can’t be axed from the play? I don’t get it. I agree that Peter’s childish expression is funny, though.

  115. Artist formerly known as Ben
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:21 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#109): More information on Andy Dick’s legal and publicity troubles, some of which involve urination in inappropriate places, can be found on the Internet.

    I wonder if now is the time for a Golden Arrow revival. Green Arrow is getting his own CW TV show, and of course Marvel’s Silver Age Hawkeye is portrayed by Oscar nominee Jeremy Renner in Joss Whedon’s “The Avengers.” Archer heroes seem to be this year’s sparkly vampires.

  116. DanielMac
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:22 pm [Reply]

    Who knew Peter Parker also has the proportionate theater appreciation of a spider?

  117. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:31 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#104): Wait, what? He took her to Iowa? How did I manage to forget that? I must have really, really wanted to.

    Anyway, now I feel called upon to point out to Brooke that Iowa does have th’opera, per below. For a state of only three million people, we support a surprising number of orchestras as well. And speaking of opera, Simon Estes is an Iowan, and he visits and performs and teaches here fairly frequently. When it comes to culture, NYC we most definitely of course are not, but we’re not just a blank space either.

  118. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:37 pm [Reply]

  119. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:39 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#117): Did I just actually write a pedantic post to justify Iowa to Brooke McEldowney? Arrrrrgh. Sorry, it must be the rhubarb pie overdose. Never again!!!

  120. Poteet
    May 12th, 2012 at 11:49 pm [Reply]

    S-M — If scripts this jaw-droppingly horrible can become profitable hit plays, I do believe, sister and brother Mudges, that we have an opportunity staring us in the face. Time to write the musical version of NAKED CAME THE STRANGER!

  121. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:00 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#115): I found the last paragraph of the Wikipedia entry on Golden Arrow particularly interesting:

    “The character may have served as inspiration to DC Comics’ Green Arrow. DC Comics purchased the rights to the characters published by Fawcett, including Golden Arrow, but failed to renew copyright on Whiz #2, putting that version of the character into public domain. DC Comics does own the right to subsequent Golden Arrow stories and has never revived the character.”

    I’m assuming a character in the public domain can be used by ANYONE. Which means Golden Arrow (at least the Whiz Comics #2 version) could show up in Funky Winkerbean as a gay, alcoholic, one-armed ex-POW with cancer who also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.

  122. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:09 am [Reply]

    Oh, Grin and Bear It, you keep keeping it real with violence, jabs at society and government and, well, uh, um, hunh! You keep on keeping on.

    Oh, Mutts Mutts, Mutts, you must be making someone laugh, right?

    The Lockhorns I got it. Love may keep some people together but for the Lockhorns, the fights they have during their marriage therapy sessions leads to Make-up sex therapy. It’s the only explanation.

    Oh, Snoopy! Resorting to the melancholy of Tom Wolfe? Oh, well. What’s done is done and was probably done decades ago (in FOUR panels, to boot. Sigh.)

  123. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:13 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#120):
    “Time to write the musical version of NAKED CAME THE STRANGER!Time to write the musical version of NAKED CAME THE STRANGER!”
    If your idea is to have Hardy Laurel star in this, keep in mind that he has no understanding of irony.

  124. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:18 am [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#121):
    “I’m assuming a character in the public domain can be used by ANYONE. Which means Golden Arrow (at least the Whiz Comics #2 version) could show up [... ]as a gay, alcoholic, one-armed ex-POW with cancer who also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.”

    Can his first target be Garfield? Boiiiiingggg!

  125. Ukulele Ike
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:19 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#113): Seth is fully subsidized by his oil-rich parents from Texas, hence the Upper West Side lavish apartment he shares with Edda. Dad has accepted his Big Gay Ballet Son, but Mom is still hoping that he will start to boink girls and give her a grandchild. As I recall, she tried to talk Edda into seducing him. I have no idea whether she knows that Seth boinked the female artiste (was she a dancer or an instrumentalist? Help me out here).

    Poteet @ #117: I didn’t mean to dis Iowa, but there probably wasn’t any opera or ballet there to speak of in 1955. I would love to visit Iowa today, and have you lead me through its cultural splendors.

  126. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:21 am [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#123):
    Ack! I am suffering from the Post Script DTs.

    I intended to paste that sentence once, not twice. It makes it seem like you chanted it, @Poteet (#120)

  127. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:25 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#120): Will the musical version of NAKED CAME THE STRANGER star those two crazy kids from “Love is…”?

  128. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:35 am [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#124): “Can his first target be Garfield? Boiiiiingggg!”

    Garfield, Heathcliff, Otto, Marmaduke, Fred Basset — let’s go full-Pet Sematary on those critters!

  129. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:41 am [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#128):

    uh…as much as it would probably do a lot of good, I do believe that Marmaduke is a full-fleged, card-carrying, certified, anti-baptisted (probably not sanitized )hell hound. I’m afraid Golden Arrow would only do so much damage before the behemoth bounds upon him. Which he would do even if the Great Dane looked like an ambulatory pincushion. His pounces would perforate and pulverize. kaput.

  130. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:45 am [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#125): Sorry, I didn’t make it clear enough that I was speaking to Brooke. I’m assuming he chose Iowa as his cultural wasteland because, well, it’s Iowa, a.k.a. flyover country. Certainly Iowa was more rural in 1955, but one of the points of THE MUSIC MAN was that Iowans were trying to bring more music and other culture into the state even in the early 1900s. Short version — I blame Brooke, not you. But truth to tell, the “cultural splendor” I’d most recommend is the Iowa State Fair:-). Other states have good ballet and opera, but most observers agree that our state fair is outstanding. Okay, I’m done boosting Iowa for the day.

  131. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:46 am [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#125): I believe the woman by whose Art he was supposedly seduced was a ballerina, and a bit of a nemesis to Edda.

    Thanks for the backstory on Seth’s trustfundiness (I know that’s not a word, but hey). Now I am envisioning Seth’s flat as a mixture of the apartment from Friends, Scott’s place in A3G, and a Brooklyn hipster commune, only with more pretentiousness and no mustaches. (Oh, wait. Doesn’t Seth’s sorta kinda boyfriend have a mustache? Anyway. Without the artisanal homebrew in the back room, then.) Like Etsy, only with dancers instead of resellers posing as handmade crafters.

  132. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:47 am [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#127): I’d ask if they can sing and dance, but really, after looking at S-M again, I think we could use them regardless.

  133. Sequitur
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:47 am [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#33): You took the words right out of my mouth you whippersnapper.

    Now, get off my lawn. And your little dog too.

    Snuff: I kinda think that’s how my wedding vows went but that was almost thirty-eight years ago so I forget.

  134. Sequitur
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:49 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#130): And your State Fair is the best State Fair in the state!

  135. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:51 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#134): Yep, that’s our story and we’re stickin’ to it.

  136. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:51 am [Reply]

    It also occurs to me — given that weak and sad performances like Mary Jane’s are apparently the toast of the town, bland soccer players and their weirdly pony-tailed brides are big-time celebrities and meddling old ladies warrant standing ovations, and art galleries run by frumpy young women with hairdos from the last century — that the Burbers might well have had a richer and more rewarding cultural experience in 1950s Iowa than is available in contemporary comics-land NYC.

  137. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:53 am [Reply]

    (That is, even if we take Brooke’s characterization of the place as correct. I’m happy to defer to Poteet’s expertise in this matter.)

  138. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:58 am [Reply]

    You know, I’m not sure I’ve ever even seen Edda (or her foremothers, for that matter) taking much advantage of the cultural offerings of New York City, real or fictional. Yes, she dances, and yes, her beau plays the cello, but that’s not the same as being an active part of the cultural scene; that’s going to work and hanging out with friends. Her activities relative to the city itself seem to consist of sitting on rocks and benches, walking on poorly drawn (and curiously unpeopled) streets, and visiting her mother in some rural location. Brooke’s vision of this purported cultural mecca is curiously thin.

  139. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 12:59 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#135):
    Are you sure you don’t mean, “…that’s our story food and we’re stickin’ to putting a stick in it”?

    I’ve never attended a state fair but I’ve heard about the delicacies that are served, scarfed, deep-fried.

  140. tallyHO
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:02 am [Reply]

    Seriously, I’ve heard about deep-fried scarfs on-a-stick!

    (I hear sometimes they get stuck in the neck.)

  141. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:02 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#137): I didn’t grow up in Iowa, so I have to get my information on old-time Iowa from those who did. But given a choice, I’d definitely pick a time-travel visit back to 1955 Iowa over a visit to the A3G version of modern NYC. Though as far as I can tell, the fashions would be about the same:-).

  142. Droopy Says
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:03 am [Reply]

    The Amusing Spiderman: Peter Passive is jealous because Hardly-Har-Har is actually doing something. The stage is now set (get it? har-har-har!) for the ultimate Spiderman duel, when Peter upstages (get it? har-har-har!) his rival by showing him how a pro catches a brick. Failing that, can the Phantom of the Opera please drop a chandelier on everyone?

    Like everyone else, I’m pining for the good old days when Parker actually did things, even if it was just serve Thor as the Human Frisbee.

    Family Circus: So PJ can vocalize his thoughts. Have any of the other melonheads done this, or are they still in the slow class with Mark Trail? The nice thing is that PJ is a cynically manipulative little freak. There’s hope for him yet!

    Deathwatch: And I was afraid Crock would start to humanize its characters.

    FW: There’s nothing like a heartfelt smirk for Mother’s Day. Please let it mean that Summer taped over Dead Lisa’s recorded messages.

  143. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:12 am [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#140): There is indeed a mind-boggling variety of stick-intensive edibles. My own State Fair food vice is a certain locally-made ice cream. There are caloric treats to suit many tastes.

  144. Sequitur
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:14 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#141): You mean you moved to Iowa?!

    Excuse me while I get over being stunned.

  145. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:17 am [Reply]

    MT — Sheesh, Mark, you could at least have mentioned the possibility of controlling overfishing as a way of saving the bluefin tuna. Casually tossing off a remark about its possible extinction does not seem very avid-environmentalist-like to me. Either improve your act or tell your people to change your promo. Maybe instead of being an “avid environmentalist,” you could be an “alleged human.”

  146. Jamoche
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:19 am [Reply]

    Slings & Arrows has also mocked eyes-front theatre, with pretentious artiste director Darren Nichols (he hates theatre; he’d probably adore the 9CL girls) not only directing his Romeo and Juliet eyes-front but also hands-off, with the costumes resembling giant cages.

    S-M should be so lucky as to get giant cage costumes – pre-caged villains are the only kind he’s got a chance to catch.

  147. commodorejohn
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:21 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#138): What do you mean? The Burbers and company are Art. They are ALL the Art. All of it. In New York, which is a place where Art is. Why would they need to go see things?

  148. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:26 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#147): I laughed initially, but then realized that you are absolutely correct. What a sobering thought.

  149. Ellie
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:27 am [Reply]

    Today’s Mary Worth is best read aloud in a self-congratulatory, boastful tone. Extra points if you throw in a drunken slur..

  150. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:30 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#144): Yep, came here and never left. Of course Iowa is not for everyone, and I’ve spent time over the years listening to people explain why they couldn’t wait to get out. I was happy for them when they happily did. Except maybe for one poor guy who desperately wanted to get back to NYC where he grew up, but ended up taking the only job he could find in his field at the time, a job which happened to be in North Dakota. I’ve wondered occasionally whatever happened to him.

  151. This Guy
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:33 am [Reply]

    On my Darkgate page, Medium Large is right above Momma. On Saturday, it was a truly surreal experience.

  152. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:35 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#147): But surely they ought to go visit Margo’s art gallery and then go listen to Tommie sing. And then they can relax, knowing they’ve Experienced It All.

  153. Sequitur
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:36 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#150): North Dakota! The place where dreams go to be reassigned.

  154. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:39 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#153): HAR! In this guy’s case, definitely!

  155. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:44 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#152): But wait – you’ve forgotten that they should also take in one of Mary Jane’s performances, and, if they’re slumming enough to attend something sports-related, they can go watch Bobby kick a soccer ball around.

  156. Poteet
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:45 am [Reply]

    PV — Now that’s a fun, unexpected twist to the story. And the story is reasonably interesting. And things actually happen in the story. And the story makes sense according to the rules of the universe in which it takes place. And the art is good and also interesting. To certain other comic strips — Hint Hint Hint.

  157. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:49 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#150): That reminds me of one interview I had for an academic position in one of the more remote plains states. I happened to arrive a few minutes before they began interviewing (conference interviews, held in a hotel suite) as I was the first candidate scheduled to meet with them. Since there was nothing else to do, I ended up waiting in the hall, looking over my c.v. one last time. The walls and door were thin, so I could hear the mumblings of their pre-interview discussion, presumably going over what to ask, what candidates might have questions about, etc. but nothing clear enough to make out… until, suddenly, one person burst out loudly, “But it IS in the middle of fucking nowhere!”


    I didn’t get the job, and later learned that the person who I believe uttered that memorable line applied for another job elsewhere not too long after that.

  158. Lisa
    May 13th, 2012 at 1:52 am [Reply]

    JP: If anyone was wondering what kind of temperature Sam likes to keep his office, today’s strip has the answer. Cold. Very cold.

  159. gnome de blog
    May 13th, 2012 at 2:15 am [Reply]

    After this bathetic treacle overload there better be a Charterstone pool party damn quick. We need at least of a week of Ian blowing hard and Wilbur snorfling sandwiches to restore the balance of the universe.

  160. Dale
    May 13th, 2012 at 2:56 am [Reply]

    Hey, Mark Trail! Eat FISH and die!

  161. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 3:06 am [Reply]

    Oh, Brooke, do shut up. If there’s anything more annoying than a hectoring scold, it’s an hypocritical hectoring scold. You’ve done your own bit to cheapen the discourse, so it’s a bit rich for you to get on your high horse now and claim that you’re above that sort of thing.

  162. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    May 13th, 2012 at 3:10 am [Reply]

    Also, your understanding of today’s relationship between the media and powerful corporations and politicians is so weirdly off I’m finding myself wondering if you’ve already moved to that moon you mention.

  163. Baka Gaijin
    May 13th, 2012 at 3:10 am [Reply]

    WHOMP there it is! MJ getting slapped in the face with a wet fish.

    “And this diaper is not changing itself.” Not funny when Marvin says it, funny when Thatababy does.

    Sally Forth and Foxtrot have the same theme but different twists. Ces wins.

  164. Doyle
    May 13th, 2012 at 4:01 am [Reply]

    9CL: Question: Is Edda’s grandfather (not Kiesel, the Amos lookalike) dead?

  165. Jamoche
    May 13th, 2012 at 4:09 am [Reply]

    Sunday 9CL: tl;dr.

  166. Eldaglass
    May 13th, 2012 at 4:31 am [Reply]

    Wait, am I actually reading Spiderman? Look at that last panel! Look that bored-yet-disgusted Simon-Cowell-esque expression! I want Peter Parker to give up his crime-fighting and forever sit in theaters, chin resting on his hand, silently condemning everything that’s brought before him.

  167. Jocelyn Knockersbury
    May 13th, 2012 at 5:22 am [Reply]

    Does Brooke McEldowney have friends?

  168. Mr. O'Malley
    May 13th, 2012 at 6:11 am [Reply]

    The Metropolitan Opera has introduced a program of high-definition simulcasts all over the place. I expect that would include some locations in Iowa. So things are better for opera fans than ever before.

    During the last few years I’ve had occasion to visit Iowa and some of the nearby states, and I would have to say that Iowa has come up in my estimation. There appear to be a handful of places that sell food that would not make you gag, and some of the landscape and towns are actually rather nice. Thanks to the university there is some decent radio there.

    Years ago I had a job interview in Iowa, and I decided to pass on the job, but I can now appreciate that it would have been better than, say, Winnemucca, Nevada.

    There are people who hightail it to some metropolis where they have interpretive dance and medical marijuana, and there are people who stay put and hang around the local espresso joint jawing about how benighted the local school board is. And what a change it is having drinkable coffee available in small midwestern towns.

    These people might encourage a minority family, help an endangered species, preserve a historical site. Let us not disparage them but offer them our best wishes.

  169. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 13th, 2012 at 8:10 am [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#129): My money’s still on the gay, alcoholic, one-armed ex-POW with cancer who also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. Especially if he uses a silver arrowhead that was dipped in holy water.

  170. Rocky Stoneaxe
    May 13th, 2012 at 8:20 am [Reply]

    @Jamoche (#146): When the choice is between a free range villain or a pre-caged villain, Spider-Meh definitely prefers the latter.

  171. Señor Tortilla
    May 13th, 2012 at 8:30 am [Reply]

    9CL – Thorass again. TL;DR.

    FW – Touching? Not in the least! Weird and creepy? Hell yes!

    Retail – Reminds me of that terrible safety video I’ve seen a million times, especially with that one scene of the kid watching his fellow classmate strip down in the safety shower. Creeeeeeeeeepy.

    Luann – Creeeeeeeeeepy AGAIN.

  172. Cloudbuster
    May 13th, 2012 at 11:18 am [Reply]

    @Inexplicable Bear Tongue (#78): Re the Nazi traitor vs. the American hero: Yeah, you’re not the only one. They also don’t even do him the service of portraying him as a real flesh & blood jerk who deserved Edie’s emotional disloyalty and contempt. There’s just some vague handwaving about how awful he was, and of course no blame is assigned to Edie for sabotaging the marriage by entering into it while pining for someone else. His entire marriage is off-panel. Just like Juliette’s husband’s awfulness is entirely off-panel, but that couldn’t possibly be relevant, could it?

  173. Cloudbuster
    May 13th, 2012 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#150): Speaking as a broadly-traveled, rural Appalachian-Ohioan (that’s practically next door to you, according to people out on the coasts!), city people are at least as provincial in their misapprehension of the richness of culture and experience available to rural people as vice versa.

    I’ve long had this theory that movies like “Wrong Turn” “The Hills Have Eyes” and “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” are representations of urban dwellers’ fear of the world beyond their experience.

    The speed and low cost of communications and transportation have blurred the lines even more — as another poster mentions, you can see the New York Metropolitan Opera with stadium seating, and probably get a much better experience than actually being there at the local mall theater in Zanesville, OH. I used to live near NYC and while I have a lot of notches on my Playbill, too many of them were way up in the mezzanine (Oh look! The Phantom indistinct figure is singing to the Christine indistinct figure!).

    I’d say it’s actually easier to export what’s best about the urban experience to a rural area than vice versa.

    There’s really no way to attend a dirt track race, or a state fair, (or even better, a county fair!), to watch a livestock auction, or hold a newborn baby goat in your hands while it reaches to nurse for the first time, or ride a loping horse up and down winding trails in a vast forest … except to be there.

  174. Calico
    May 13th, 2012 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    Happy Mother’s Day to all Moms on this list! Hope your day is full of love and appreciation. : )

  175. JuneBizzle
    May 13th, 2012 at 4:14 pm [Reply]

    That Hardy Laurel is no Costello Abbott, that’s for DAMN sho’!

  176. Liam
    May 13th, 2012 at 6:25 pm [Reply]

    JP-Geez Iris, it looks like someone already shot something into your eye and it doesn’t look like courage to me.

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