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Thursday one-liners

Momma, 7/5/12

Momma owns a bottle of some kind of incredibly fast-acting and powerful pesticide, which is no doubt highly toxic to all living things that come in contact with it (e.g., Francis, Momma).

Wizard of Id, 7/5/12

This lady is “keeping her husband on his toes” by threatening to have immolated alive.

Hi and Lois, 7/5/12

Ditto can control the weather, or perhaps the very flow of time itself, with his mind, but isn’t really very good at it.

Spider-Man, 7/5/12

Something about the crazed madman who sent a theaterful of people running in terror and incapacitated her super-powered husband frightens Mary Jane.

Shoe, 7/5/12

Shoe is really kind of a dick.

294 responses to “Thursday one-liners”

  1. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:29 am [Reply]

    Luann: “It’s not like I’m explosive or anything.”

    Quill: “Sorry, luv, but your farts are so bad even your dog has to leave the room.”

  2. Chareth Cutestory
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    Spider-Man: Spidey’s face in panel one makes him the absolute poster boy of nincompoops everywhere.

  3. teenchy
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    H&L: “Dummy! Why don’t you wish for spring or fall?”

    Allergies?

  4. Liam
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    MW-Wilbur, might I suggest that you give Dawn something that will alter her mood. Now I won’t call it drugs, okay I will call it drugs. Wilbur I suggest that you drug Dawn.

    Baby Blues-You should have been there five minutes earlier when Mr. Furley walked by.

    Spiderman-You do remember Clown-9 don’t you. The villian who disrupted the play and got away.

    MT-I don’t think Gene would have siced a bear on two people to get a confession out of them.

    Beetle Bailey-I don’t know. I would hate to hear what they have to confess.

    JP-The last party we had up here was the Donner party and I hate to tell you what sort of food they had.

  5. Drew Funk
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    What exactly is Momma growing in that garden? Acorns? Walnuts?

  6. wossname
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:44 am [Reply]

    FW – That’s not Death Cat, is it? Because that would be too good to be true.

    A3G – “Well, Nina, since you’re so opposed to the only option that makes sense, my suggestion is that we do nothing, and let you and the baby die slow, agonizing deaths here in the apartment. That sound good?”

    Baldo – Now, I’m no linguistic scholar, but I’m pretty darn sure “VÁMONOS” means “Let’s go (together).” Señor Google tells me there are several ways to say “Go away,” but this ain’t one of them.

    Sly – I’d be less concerned about the kid squirting water through the window, and more concerned that a duck has built a nest inside my house with an exit hole leading to the outdoors.

  7. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:45 am [Reply]

    A3G – “If you are considering an ambulance and c-section, Tommy, you can forget it!”
    “So we need to consider another method”
    “What else is there?”
    “Death. That’s your option, here. You can let the people who have done this before and know what to do, do what they need to do to save your life and that of your baby. Or, you can sit here and wait for death.”
    “Hmmm. No death! He plays by his rules, not ours! I need another option! Remember, I’m rich!”

  8. Andy
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    Momma: Where can I get me some of that herbicide? My front walk and patio need it stat!

  9. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:49 am [Reply]

    “Nancy” cartoonist Guy Gilchrist is currently listing his original artwork on eBay:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/NANCY-SUNDAY-PAGE-ORIGINAL-COMIC-STRIP-ART-SLUGGO-ERNIE-BUSHMILLER-GUY-GILCHRIST-/280911587144?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4167a2a748

    This could be your chance to p/u that special “Fritzi Ritz” strip you always wanted!

  10. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:50 am [Reply]

    Congrats to the Walker/Browne amalgum in H&L. The backgrounds actually sort of line up. The trees, the bushes, the fence posts. I know that’s what is expected, but since there are so many other egregious errors in so many other comics, I figured I’d give credit when it is due.

    Garfield, for instance, shows the titular cat walking past the sun. Perhaps his second thought did in fact come several hours later when the sun had moved significantly in its arc across the sky, but I think it was supposed to depict movement in the mostly minimalist miasma that is the Garfield Universe.

    Speaking of Walker/Browne and bad artwork, you’d think the amalgum that comes up with these jokes would avoid those that involve bears, since they obviously CAN’T draw anything that resembles a woodland creature.

  11. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    Momma: Francis doesn’t know a tree from a weed, but that dandelion is not in the garden, as his mother said.

  12. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    @Andy (#8): Andy has it right, Josh. “Herbicide” is the mot juste here, not “pesticide”.

  13. nescio
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    Suddenly Momma realized why she kept finding bags of catnip at Francis’s apartment.

  14. Calvin\'s Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:54 am [Reply]

    Luann – Once again, this comes down to the author’s incompetence. Just like the Weenie World/Ann Eiffel story line, he could have told the story in such a way that it resonated properly. He could have shown Ann doing actual bad things, rather than consitently writing Brad as a childish goof-off and Ann as a manager with a childish oaf for an employee, another for a customer, and the white-trash girlfriend of her employee threatening her with violence if she doesn’t back off.

    Here, he had the chance to explore the story of “what happens if Luann does finally admit to her feelings, and then Quill has to leave anyway”. A week after the encounter they started to have, Quill could get the news that his father’s contract expires in two months and won’t be renewed. That would be realistic and would open up a lot of dramatic possibility.

    Instead, we get dad calling just seconds before Quill can get started and informing him that he needs to move in a week, and needs to come home right this second in order to start packing. That is just clumsy and lazy writing.

    The fact that he has used this exact same clumsy and lazy plot device twice before makes it even more ridiculous. You would think that he would have improved with practice.

  15. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:57 am [Reply]

    Zippy: Don’t accept, Zippy! It’s a trap!

    // On the other hand, I think it would be great if Zippy got a gig as a regular on Mary Worth, or Rex Morgan.

  16. Here come the Judge
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    The look on Sam’s face is priceless when the large-breasted proprietor of the lodge accuses he and Avery of not “looking like party types”. Not only is he offended, but, in a rare moment of introspection, he realizes, “She’s right. We really don’t look like party types”.

    We need to get Abbey in on this story. It’s been proven that she is the party type, even if it was inadvertent.

  17. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    SM: I was going to say something sarcastic about how that “something” could be his obvious psychosis and his ability to conjure inventions and elements out of thin air, but then I realized that MJ is still one step ahead of Spidey on this one.

    JP: No reservation? Was it possible that their plans wouldn’t work out? Sam began to experience a feeling he’d never felt before: a slow down-turn of the mouth, a slightly empty feeling in his stomach, a tension at the back of his neck. What was this odd sensation? A thought began to form in his mind: “No reservation? I’m so . . . so . . . disa . . . disappoint— No! This won’t do!” Sam reached for his wallet, feeling its comforting heft as his smug returned.

    MT: Hunh. I guess we are about due for a “Rusty in peril” plot.

    MW: Um, isn’t Wilber the one who’s an advice columnist?

    Unless Giorgio is the Italian Wilber: a fat, comb-overed, panini-lovin’ schlub.

    A3G: “What else is there?!”
    “Scott, bring me the barbecue tongs, stat!”

  18. Mibbitmaker
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:01 am [Reply]

    WoI: That couple makes the Lockhorns look like Love Is!

    A3G:
    Nina: “I refuse proper methods of delivery for my now-concluding pregnancy, and there is no alternative, either! And, no, no labor-timed abortion, either either!”
    Like Archie Bunker would say: “WWWWWWHAAAAAA’????!!!!?”

    A&J: Aren’t Gollywobblers delicious, but fattening?

    9CL: The Nicolette Cignet Anatomically Impossible Collection

    Crank: …. a new joke……

    DT:
    “Where’s Tracy? He’s being no help at all!”
    “Uh…. He’s busy over there…. saluting a flag…”

    Doones: Why, does MSNBC pick up Obama’s gifts?

    H&L: EXACTLY!!!

  19. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    Nina: Don’t call an ambulance for a C-section!
    Tommie: There may be another option.
    Nina: What is it?
    Tommie: I knock you out cold and Scott calls an ambulance for a C-section.

  20. Buck Ripsnort
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    Spidey: Peter slaps his forehead and recalls, “Ooooh yeah, the VILLAIN!”

  21. tb4000
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    SF: Nice one, Hil.

  22. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    Luann: When Quill gets home, he’s going to thank his dad profusely. “Thanks, Da. Just in time, too! That American vixen almost had me!”

    Dad: Oy! I warned you about the States, son. It’s Puritans and pornographers, all.

  23. Dennis Jimenez
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    Momma – The odiferous toxicity of Momma has been well established for many years….

    WoI – I dig the way she dresses him, too – this guy is learning bunches about humility….

    H&L – Ditto is a chronic complainer – it’s funny, a) because he has a perfect life; b) it’s merely a reflection of his unwillingess to embrace his homosexuality; c) he’s really just frustrated cuz he wants to screw his sister; or d) all of the above….

    S-M – I dig todays strip cuz I know MJ is actually jerking him on in panel two….

    Shoe – For those who say I know no shame – I’m ashamed to say I kinda liked this strip….

    Adios Amigos, DJ.

  24. StriderGirl
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    Spider-Man: I think MJ’s shirt has superpowers of its own. Namely and to wit, how is it staying in place?

    Reminds me of Calvin and Hobbes. “Is Amazon Girl’s superpower the ability to get that body into that suit?” “Nah, they can all do that.”

  25. Karmyn
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    A3G: This can only end badly. Even if the rest goes smooth and the baby is the best baby ever, it will end badly. For us.

    MW: You have only one choice left, Wilber. Kill Dawn.

    FW: Please be the Death Cat, please. And be there for Les and Summer. Then Cayla will be free again.

  26. Holly Folly
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:21 am [Reply]

    I find it odd that Spiderman wears his spider outfit in their house while cuddling with MJ. Does he do that all the time? Just walk around in his superhero outfit? Then MJ is all like ‘take out the trash’ and Spiderman’s all like, ‘no I can’t take out the trash because I am Spiderman right now.’

  27. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:22 am [Reply]

    JP: Termites, no internet, snotty service. Having no reservation in a dump like this should be a welcome relief. But, no, Sam, go ahead and press on to get a room despite all the red flags of warning flapping in the breeze.

    Avery: Why do we need TWO rooms, Sam? I thought you understood all those fishing references were innuendo.

  28. Will
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:23 am [Reply]

    Shoe is the bird with the ciger? Shit, I’ve thought it was the bird with glasses for my entire life. My world is shattered.

  29. Lily Sincere
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    Hopefully, Ted will listen to what Shoe is really saying and get out of town while he still can. Not having lived in Treetops for very long, however, he still looks like a fairly optimistic fellow who thinks a change is as good as a rest and that he’ll be just fine if he embraces his new community. Three years later, he’ll be making bitter comments about Roz’s food right in front of her when the next cheerful newcomer haplessly wanders in.
    Their town is called “Treetops,” isn’t it? How in the world do I know that? What other information has been driven out of my brain by this knowledge? I gotta take a nap now.

  30. Hibbleton
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    @StriderGirl (#24):
    Probably carpet tape or liquid nails.

  31. sporknpork
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:28 am [Reply]

    Spiderman has that disgusted look in panel one because Mary Jane’s nose is filled with cobwebs.

  32. S.Stout
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    @Calvin\’s Cardboard Box (#14):

    It’s a pretty bad sign when all your scary loyal gocomic fans declare mutiny. Greg might think he can repeat the same storyline every couple years but eventually people catch on.

  33. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#Y317): Had I been NASA boss at the time of the Mars Climate Observer fiasco, before I resigned in disgrace and shame, and committed seppuku, I would have made it my final business to eradicate all traces of the English traditional measurement system from the JPL, Houston, and the Cape, and anywhere else my writ extended. The words inch, pound, foot, and mile would be removed from all software and printed matter, and vendos selling 12 ounce cokes would be modified or destroyed.

    Although nobody died, IMO this was a worse disaster for NASA than Challenger. Engineers and supervisors thought the o-rings would be fine – this turned out to be a horribly wrong decision, but one can understand how the decision was made. OTOH, sending rocket thruster commands in foot lbs when newton meters were called for make the people involved look like protagonists in a particularly awful, cruel, and indefensible Polish joke.[*]

  34. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:30 am [Reply]

    Wiz: I’m havnig a hard time understanding the pretext here.

    Wife: Hubby, let’s go down to the mortician and ask about creamation.

    Husband: You mean Creamation (c) that new frothy milk drink from Nestle? Hey, why are we going to that place with all the dead guys?

  35. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:31 am [Reply]

    9CL – Ooops. Brooke has lost his train of thought again, and is busy drawing with one hand. When he comes too (sic), he will have forgotten what the plot was again.

    Strips like Mark Trail and A3G suffer from ‘making it up as we go along’ syndrome, but it takes the form of ‘an eight-year-old wrote this’ plots. Brooke’s are more of the stoner drift – oh, I forgot she wasn’t pregnant after all! I forgot why she was modeling for these people, and why they wanted to fire her, and why … ooooh! Edda’s nekkid!!!

  36. sporknpork
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:33 am [Reply]

    I’m pretty sure those are index cards Shoe is holding up like a terrible David Letterman impersonator. “And for our next guest…”

  37. Dennis Jimenez
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    @Holly Folly (#26): I’m pretty sure he’s not wearing the PJ bottoms, though….

  38. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    HotC: That Heart will make a great Helen Clark when she grows up.

  39. UncleJeff
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    ReFOOB: (all together now!) CAV-ity search! CAV-ity search!! CAV-ity search!!!

  40. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#33):

    I can’t let this opportunity pass to tell the story (part of the story) of the Battle of Ulm, where the Unfortunate General Mack was surrounded and captured with his entire army by Napoleon, in large part because he sat still and confidently waited for the Russians to come up and reinforce him on schedule.

    Unfortunately, the Russians were still using the old Julian calendar, and their dates were 13 days behind the dates on the Gregorian calendar used by the Austrians. So the Russians were still two weeks away when Ney closed the last line of retreat and Mack was forced to surrender along with with 30,000 men who had barely fired a shot.

  41. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    Shoe’s just worried about competition now over who gets to fertilize Roz’s eggs.

  42. sporknpork
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    So… Mary Jane’s mesh breasts, are they breathable?

  43. TheDiva
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:47 am [Reply]

    SM: MJ finds Peter’s petty jealousy flattering? Suddenly her attachment to him makes a little more sense…

    WoI: “Tell us about your Heretic’s Special…”

  44. Mibbitmaker
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    JP: (in really, really exagerated sarcasm): Oh, no! Whatever will they do? Something’s gone terribly wrong and there, of course, is NO WAY THEY COULD POSSIBLY SUCCEED!

    FC: So, Dolly…. Eat a peach! (cue the Allman Brothers)

    Luann: [panel 1 headdesk!]

    MT: Trish: “Yyyeah… right….”

    MW: Suddenly over the phone, the familiar voice from National Lampoon’s Deteriorata is heard saying, “Give up!”

    Mutts’s Hallmarks of Felinity.

    Popeye:
    P2: Olive, reciting an overused song lyric won’t help.
    P4: Bluto/Brutus wouldn’t go “?”, he’d just gush gruffly happy about the opportunity.

    S-M: Leave it to MJ to sniff out the baffling subtleties of the situation.

  45. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:54 am [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#y272):

    No “juicy” details about John Sladek’s funeral (cremation ceremony, actually), only that there were a number of both touching and usually funny memorials, including several read out that had been sent in by fellow sf/f writers (I recall Tom Disch and, I think, Dave Langford specifically), and that (at John’s request) the background music throughout was jazz.

    A few months later I went to Gordon Dickson’s funeral, which was a total depressing mess, especially by comparison. For one thing, I’d known Gordy for many years, while John Sladek was just a nodding acquaintance. More importantly, the minister did *not* know Gordy, obviously felt that sf was a sinful subject to be glossed over, and gave a hard-conservative-Christian hellfire sermon, which would have appalled Gordy. I don’t know if the surviving family members who presumably chose the minister knew what they were getting or just had a bad random pick. (All of the many local sf fans and Dorsai Irregulars who had sat through the service silently grimacing went off to have a real wake and story swap about him afterwards.)

    Personally, I’m thinking of turning Parsi so when I go I can be eaten by vultures.

  46. Doctor Handsome
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    Presumably, Momma was already out in the garden when she noticed the dandelion. Was it really easier to go back in the house, grab her high-octane paraquat, and enlist her incompetent bachelor son than it would have been to just pluck the goddamn dandelion? Work smarter, not harder, Momma.

  47. Black Drazon
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:57 am [Reply]

    Here we see how the Flagstone children managed to not grow at all in the seven months between these two panels, but I somehow find less disturbing than the image of Mary Jane in Peter’s half-dressed spandex lap. Far less.

  48. Hibbleton
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:59 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#33): I work in a government funded scientific research lab. All of our measurements and results are published in metric. A lot our equipment still use English measurements because it’s old, like some of us engineers. Very expensive to replace all that stuff. Well, probably not that expensive to replace me but then who’ll understand all that old equipment?

  49. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:02 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#y282):

    “Thank you. I read a story somewhere about a poet who had a piece published in the New Yorker, way back when, in which the initial letters of each line spelled out the poetry editor’s name with the suggestion he perform an anatomically impossible sex act.”

    Don’t know that one (would like to). I did read an academic mystery once in which one literary scholar was gulled into believing he had discovered a major lost poem by someone or other, staked his career on that fact, and then discovered that it had been planted by an academic rival and when the first letters of each line were read in order a message such as “Dr Smith Fell For This Gag” was revealed. I think this turned out to be the motive for murder, and I’m not sure I’d blame him. . . (except of course that any lit scholar should have instinctively checked for this sort of thing as a matter of course).

  50. Doctor Handsome
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:03 am [Reply]

    “I forgive you for acting like a jealous nincompoop. I still need time to come to terms with you being such an indolent limpdick moocher, though.”

  51. Mibbitmaker
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    New Pop Culture’s Kids is finally up!

    Knowing Michelle, she’ll probably still imagine doing that on her own.

  52. TheDiva
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:05 am [Reply]

    9CL: Don’t you mean “lowest denominator”?

    A3G: Why is Nina so adamant against getting a C-section? Wouldn’t someone whose mother died in childbed (and who is terrified of the same thing happening to her) be less likely to want the natural homebirth thing? And for that matter, why are they even having this argument? Either the situation isn’t serious enough to call for emergency intervention, in which case Nina’s wishes to avoid the hospital should be well-known to her midwife by now, or it is a life-or-death emergency in which case they need to stop yammering and call 911 now. Again, I fear for the child being brought into this family.

    C’shaft: Nursing home fees would be less expensive in the long run–particularly if you go to one of those cheapo places that don’t check employee backgrounds too closely. I’m just sayin’….

    Luann: “Not explosive”? There’s the understatement of the century. Luann is the romantic equivalent of an inert gas–there’s no chemistry with her, at all.

    MW: Let’s see, Wilbur: Dawn was miserable when she was with you in Santa Royale, and now she’s miserable when she’s with you in Italy. I think I’ve found the common denominator…

    Pibgorn: TL;DR: “I love my artistic genius!”

    Pluggers are hypocrites.

  53. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:06 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#40): I know it was just a typo, but I like the way you capitalized unfortunate in “the Unfortunate General Mack”. Almost as if it was part of his title, which perhaps it should have been.

    Good story, though, I hadn’t heard it before.

    // Did you hear about the retired admiral who was asked by his physician when he had last had sex. The admiral though for a while, and answered, “1956″. “That’s a long time ago,” said the doctor. “Do you think so?” said the old man. “It’s only 2130 now.” [*]

  54. brendancalling
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:08 am [Reply]

    So i was enjoying the misery in the Luann gocomics comments, and followed this VERY NOT SAFE AT ALL FOR WORK LINK SO DON’T SAY I DIDN’T WARN YOU,with an extra panel.

    Please ignore the ads for dick enhancement.

  55. Illustrator Steve
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:10 am [Reply]

    MT – Rusty should feel a tiny bit better knowing it’s not only him who Mark lets down by reneging on fishing trips. Even Mark’s BEST FISHING BUDDY, Gene Jackson, who spent months in prison waiting to go fishing with Mark, is told by Mark that he doesn’t have time to go fishing with him. NOW, all of a sudden, after all the time Mark has spent away from his job an family responsibilities, Mark suddenly claims he needs to, “STOP BY THE MAGAZINE OFFICE”. Stop by the magazine office for WHAT, Mark, to collect your severance pay? Pay attention, Mark, since you’ve already used up all your vacation time, all Bill Ellis owed you for severance pay was five bucks, which his bookkeeper mailed to your last known address. But don’t worry about making ends meet, Mark. Maybe you could apply for the door greeter position down at the T Rading Company’s shovel and rake retail outlet.

  56. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:11 am [Reply]

    A&J: Good question, Janis. The short answer is no. Your boat is cutter rigged, with a single mast. A gollywobbler is a large kind of quadrilateral staysail rigged between two masts of a schooner.

    // Yes, I did have to look it up. And I’ve been sailing for half a century. Love this strip.

  57. btown
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    Mary Giorgio: “Wilbur, my good friend, my advice to you is: Vaffanculo!”

    Spidey MJ: now we can discuss something more important!
    Spidey: what’s that?
    MJ: the plot!
    Spidey: huh?

  58. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    Hi & Lois: Those kids have amazingly freakish feet..

    FW: “Funky Winkerbean. Constantly re-defining ‘Stupid’ since 1972!”

    MW: Oh, I have PLENTY of suggestions for you, Wilbur…

  59. Doctor Handsome
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    OK, what did the soon-to-be-murdered husband think they were going to the mortuary for in the first place? “Grab your keys, we’re going to the funeral home to set up a lame joke.” “Yes, dear.” “It’s about how I’m slowly poisoning you.” “Of course, dear.”

  60. The Spectacular Spider-Brick
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:15 am [Reply]

    S-M: If I tilt my head and cross my eyes so the panel 1 image of Mary-Jane’s bosom overlaps with that of the girl in the adjacent Road Kill T-Shirts ad, I get sort of a 3-D effect. I also get a headache. But it’s totally worth it.

  61. Illustrator Steve
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    MT – Next adventure… RUSTY TRAIL QUITS THE FUNNY PAGES AND CELEBRATES HIS NEW LIFE BY BURNING HIS POLE AND TACKLE!

  62. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:17 am [Reply]

    @Shrug (#49): It would probably be much harder to do (maybe not) to use the first letter of the 2nd word in each line to spell out a message, or some such similar scheme. But if you wanted to humiliate a scholar whom you suspected to be a poseur, it might well work.

  63. flatsixes
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    MT: Holy crap! After ten weeks of mounting… expectation… Trish “Honey” turns out to be, like, ELEVEN? Trail, you sonofabitch.

  64. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    @brendancalling (#54): What ads?

    // Right.

  65. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:23 am [Reply]

    @S.Stout (#32):

    “It’s a pretty bad sign when all your scary loyal gocomic fans declare mutiny.”

    Flashing on the Stan Freeberg “Columbus Discovers America” skit, with all the sailors in the background chanting “Rumble, rumble, rumble. Mutiny, mutiny, mutiny.”

    Maybe the non-ironic LUANN fans are just mutinying because they’re all coming down with scurvey?

  66. pugfuggly
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    A3G Let’s see, another method to rectify birth complications that doesn’t involve ambulances, c-sections or any other kind of medical science. I guess we’re down to ‘magic’.

    FW ‘Oh, it’s just my lunch! It’s ok, you can put it back…’

    MW Hmmm…how do you say ‘LEAVE HER THE FUCK ALONE, YOU FAT TWAT!!!” in italian?

  67. Doctor Handsome
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:29 am [Reply]

    I don’t know about you, but I’m totally jazzed about this dynamic new character, “Ted.” I look forward to joining him on his grand adventures, and together we’ll laugh and learn and… perhaps love? My only concern is that he looks pretty indistinguishable from all the other grotesque drunken bird-things in the strip.

  68. pugfuggly
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    @Doctor Handsome (#59):

    OK, what did the soon-to-be-murdered husband think they were going to the mortuary for in the first place?

    /on the way home/

    “Wait, so my mother isn’t dead, then???”

  69. S.Stout
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:36 am [Reply]

    @brendancalling (#54):

    I think “bats” created just about all of those.

  70. bunivasal
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    Wow. Judging from the way that tree is going, Momma handles defoliation the same way as the US military: napalm.

  71. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    @Hibbleton (#48): I understand that. Interesting, though. Do you have any special procedures for avoiding embarrassing mistakes? Like posting large signs with conversion factors on the equipment: “Multiply cubits by 457.2 to get millimeters.”

    // I’m using the conversion table from the indispensable Glover’s Pocket Ref, 4th ed, 2011. An extraordinarily useful compendium. To convert furlongs per fortnight to mph, multiply by 0.000372, in case you wondered.

  72. Esther Blodgett
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:40 am [Reply]

    FW: No, I want to go back to this passport-stealing baboon in the tree. Any chance we could get Les to bare his teeth at the thing so it’ll tear him to pieces?

  73. Dennis Jimenez
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:42 am [Reply]

    @Esther Blodgett (#72): I think a face transplant would make a super storyline….

  74. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:43 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#53):

    Not a typo. In War and Peace, he introduces himself as “the unfortunate General Mack”, so I was promoting him to that title.

  75. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:45 am [Reply]

    folks, if you don’t already, go read today’s Sinfest. I’ll wait for you to get back.
    .
    .
    .
    9CL: whooops! where’s that Coppertone dog when we need it!

    Dilbert: *remembers that one for later use*

    Lio: ?!?

    SBp: TROPE WIN!!!!! (Josh, I’m shocked you didn’t notice this one.)

    Bizarro: hee! (don’t look, Ethel!)

    JP: Sam begs to differ.

    Mutts: Ceiling Mooch is watching you. . . .

    RwO: borrowing characters from Pastis?

    rMC: one of the classics.

  76. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:46 am [Reply]

    Love Is . . .a Brazilian.

  77. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    @Shrug (#45): Personally, I’m thinking of turning Parsi so when I go I can be eaten by vultures.

    That’s always been one of my top choices. But did you know that recently there has been an unexplained die off of vultures in India? Really, saw an article about it in the New Yorker a while back. It has become a real chore for the remaining few vultures to eat their way through the deceased Parsis on their funerary towers. There’s a backlog, apparently.

    // No, the vultures are NOT dying of obesity. You’re disgusting.

  78. Horace Broon
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:51 am [Reply]

    A3G: “That’s how Robert II of Scotland’s mother died, and I’m assuming there have been no medical advances since then!”

    ASM: And by “actually I was pretty flattered”, she means “I’m so used to you being a nincompoop it would barely have registered, except for the bit where I had to walk home”.

    Curtis: Anyone taking bets on whether Greg’s clueless enough to buy something that’s deboned? How about smoked? Tinned?

    DT: Look out! Abner Kadaver’s gonna reach out and grab ya!

    FC: Dolly, do you know what happens to kids who question God’s creation?

    GT: Oh my, what disorder has Rubin looked up on Wikipedia now?

    H&J: Should we add this to the list of “strips whose creators are in on the joke”? Or does making a joke about generic food items indicate they aren’t aware their entire world is like that?

    MW: He’s actually already called Mary, but her response was “Who cares about your daughter’s problems? I’m getting to meddle a whole city! Mwah-ha-ha-ha!”

    Phantom: Just. Arrest. Him.

    Pluggers: You’re a Plugger if you hate supposed “reality” shows that are nothing of the kind, but are fine with works of fiction that don’t pretend to be anything else? Really?

  79. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#74): I know the rank systems were different in Napoleonic times. Where would he be today in comparison? Does Unfortunate General rank above or below Lieutenant General? I assume that would be equivalent to Unfortunate Admiral in the Navy, which shouldn’t be confused with Rear Admiral, Lower Half, which is an unfortunate title, by courtesy.

    Is commodorejohn in yet? He would know.

  80. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:59 am [Reply]

    Herb – They’ve gone meta. We’ve become redundant. This is like that Ralph Wolf cartoon where the sheepdog offers to take both parts while the wolf recuperates. Let’s take the rest of the day off and go outside and stare at clouds.

    Liberty – We’re in a rather short repeat cycle now, a rather short repeat cycle now, a rathe

    Mutts – Just what I need. Another Solange “say, cats sure do funny things with the panel border” in the making.

  81. Illustrator Steve
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:00 am [Reply]

    MT – Once again Elrod confirms he has less writing ability and imagination than the average five year old and is even more ignorant of how our country’s laws work than my cat is.

  82. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    Josh – The weed killer in “Momma” is highly toxic, but only in that it shrinks living things down to horrid, misshapen dwarf abominations. Mell discovered it around 1970 when he accidentally sprayed it on the Miss Peach strip.

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#9): This could be your chance to p/u that special “Fritzi Ritz” strip you always wanted!
    But they’re not selling Bushmiller art.

    @Mibbitmaker (#18): Nicolette Cignet also seems to be for people who need to compensate for something, like having no ass.

  83. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:02 am [Reply]

    @Shrug (#49): In a paperback set of Addams Family stories written by Jack Sharkey at the time of the original show, there’s one where Wednesday (whose teacher insists on calling her by the ‘proper name’ Winifred) learns that the opaque poetess the teacher inflicts on the class was disgruntled by early rejection and concealed her real meaning. To find them, one read every other word, which revealed enough about her true attitude that Wednesday happily reported to her parents that the teacher had had a real book burning.

    @TheDiva (#52): Why is Nina so adamant against getting a C-section?
    She fears that which she cannot spell.

  84. Illustrator Steve
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:03 am [Reply]

    MT – Does anybody know if there is a type of gum, or gum wrapper, one can chew to help quit reading the Mark Trail comic strip?

  85. Cloudbuster
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:04 am [Reply]

    @Holly Folly (#26): Is it really surprising? I mean, Spiderman is no great shakes as a man or a superhero, but Peter Parker is worse. I imagine that MJ can really only get turned on when he’s wearing the costume.

  86. Chico Marx
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:05 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#66):

    “MW Hmmm…how do you say ‘LEAVE HER THE FUCK ALONE, YOU FAT TWAT!!!” in italian?”

    “Hey, leave-a her the fuck-a lone, you fatsa twat-a, you!!”

  87. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:08 am [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#80):

    “Just what I need. Another Solange “say, cats sure do funny things with the panel border” in the making.”

    Well, when a kat started doing funny things below the panel border in THE DINGBAT FAMILY (a.k.a. THE FAMILY UPSTAIRS) back in 1910, Very Good Things came of it.

  88. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:10 am [Reply]

    Japan, explained.

    Sequitur may have taken things a step too far.

    cosplay bravery. (SPOOOOON!)

    FENNEC!!1!

    SQUIRREL!!

  89. Cloudbuster
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:11 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#55): Mark’s shameful secret: he doesn’t know how to fish!

  90. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:15 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#79):

    Well, for a time he was Quartermaster General, which likely ranks just below a Halfmaster and a Fullmaster.

    After the surrender, he was stripped of his titles and convicted of cowardace. But Napoleon recognized his true title at the surrender ceremony:

    “I give back to the Unfortunate General his sword and his freedom, along with my regards to give to his Emperor”

    The Austrians, long before the Luftwaffe, were the original Washington Generals of military history, existing mostly as foils for the other European warlords to use to boost their stats and run up the score.

  91. Cloudbuster
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:15 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#81): You’re absolutely right. You’ll note that a cat never talks to the police without a lawyer present.

  92. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:19 am [Reply]

    H&J: Isn’t one of the Great Rules (…never get involved in a land war in Asia) to never eat a food product labeled “food”? Or “product”?

    // Dog food. Plant food. Cheese Food Product. Potted Meat Product! Product 19! Yay!

  93. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:19 am [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#82):

    “Nicolette Cignet also seems to be for people who need to compensate for something, like having no ass”

    The author has long forgotten this plot point, but the original storyline had the ugly spiky-haired dancer being hired as the model, and Edda being retained simply as an ass double because she had a face for radio and in addition was too full-figured to be the primary spokesmodel. Of course, all this was long forgotten by the time Brooke decided to use the storyline as an excuse to draw Edda porn.

  94. Artist formerly known as Ben
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:19 am [Reply]

    Momma: I guess Sonia started stockpiling agent orange as soon as she got the chance.

    WofI: Oh baby, you know it drives me wild when you threaten to incinerate me.

    H&L: Ditto is unwise in his use of reality warping powers. Perhaps he should call up Franklin Richards for advice.

    S-M: Mary Jane is flattered that Peter was acting like a jealous nincompoop instead of the usual indolent moron. But kudos to her for reminding him that Clown-9 exists.

    MT: “Where did… daughter… come from? Too… much… human… contact! Must… withdraw!”

    MW: Giorgio must be thinking, “Yeah, I have some suggestions, but probably none I should share with her father.”

    9CL: Pretty good draftsmanship for a man who’s only giving himself one hand to work with.

    Baldo: “If I’m trying to teach you how to bake a cake, I guess it’s kind of bad that it’s already done, but hindsight is always 20-20.”

    JP: This crazy redneck woman wields a threatening hammer at everyone who tries to rent one of her rooms. Oddly enough that makes her place on of the most exclusive establishments in the state, so of course swells like Sam want to get in.

    DT: Okay, here it is 2012 and the one black person on Dick’s team has the last name “Ebony” and that’s pretty weird. But if she actually just put three bullets in Kadaver she is an MVP on Team Tracy.

    Phantom: “And now, stand by for the weekend sports wrap-up.”

    6C: When they first started dating he said that he’d never even look at another hat, but he’s only a man.

    DtM: Dennis will now stare at old people’s mouths to see if he can recognize any of his own baby teeth. It’s all part of Henry’s plan to make Dennis act really weird around Mr. Wilson.

    SSmith: Jughaid takes pickles, lemons and pixy stix and tosses them into a big word salad. Mary Beth runs to get a doctor because the heat and the coonskin cap finally done fried the boy’s brain.

    SFx: Nice prank, Mister Gardener Man. But you need to hold the hose the other way around if you want to pretend it’s your dick.

  95. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:20 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#90):

    “The Austrians, long before the Luftwaffe, were the original Washington Generals of military history, existing mostly as foils for the other European warlords to use to boost their stats and run up the score.”

    In professional wrestling, the term is “jobber to the stars” (a loser with just enough credibility so that when someone beats him the opponent does get a small egoboo boost, but not so much credibility that anyone seriously expects an upset win).

    Usually one rises to “jobber to the stars” level by first beating two or three totally inept nobodies, so I’m visualizing the Austrian army starting off by crushing Leichenstein, Monaco, and the monks of Mt. Athos before they start facing and losing to the really tough military units, like the Swiss Navy.

  96. mumbly joe
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:21 am [Reply]

    Doesn’t use of a fast-acting military-grade defoliant seem like sorta overkill for a single dandelion? It seems like that sorta stuff might not only kill her entire garden, but also leech into the water supply and blight plant life throughout the region, and probably give her neighbors cancer.

    Maybe… maybe that’s actually Momma’s plan all along: a poisoning effort to revenge herself on her neighbors for phantom slights that they’re not aware of and she herself only half-remembers.

  97. Cloudbuster
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:22 am [Reply]

    MW: Is it too crude to hope that Giorgio or one of his friends just bangs Dawn until she says “Dave who?” Thatsa how we cheer a donna up in Italiano!

    Of course, then she’ll be back in the states: “This salmon square reminds me of how Nunzio said I tasted! Life is-a brutal!”

  98. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:24 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#94):

    “DT: Okay, here it is 2012 and the one black person on Dick’s team has the last name “Ebony” and that’s pretty weird.”

    She used to be The Spirit’s sidekick, but that was seventy years and one round of gender reassignment surgery ago.

  99. mumbly joe
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:24 am [Reply]

    @nescio (#13): Honestly, I’m surprised Francis, not being able to differentiate between various plants, didn’t pick and dry the dandelion, for smoking, and hold on to both it and that spraycan of herbicide, just in case the Vietnam War breaks out again.

  100. Ashley
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:28 am [Reply]

    A3G: could Nina deliberately WANT to die in childbirth? To atone for her mother dying in childbirth, perhaps?

    Either way, I’d call 911 anyway. Get thee to a hospital!

  101. Artist formerly known as Ben
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:29 am [Reply]

    @Shrug (#98): Oh Denny Colt, if you could only see your old friend now.

  102. Hibbleton
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:29 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#71): Nothing special except, perhaps, this example: one of our grad students was taking a lab course with our PI and one of his assignments was repeating an old experiment. All the units on the assignment sheet were in English, which was unusual. Because of this, the student dutifully reported his results in English units. (Not?) surprisingly, he had his ass reamed out by the professor for using those units. I guess the lesson was that you can use any units you want in your own work but you’d better publish in accepted scientific ones, or maybe, professors are unknowable demigods, i.e. dingbats with tenure.

  103. mvg
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    Lockhorns: Not only are the park benches getting farther apart, but Leroy’s left arm is now 5 feet long. Aging does indeed suck.

  104. Santa Royale With Cheese
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:34 am [Reply]

    JP: This is going to be exactly like the time Dilbert sat in a hole in the ground thinking it was a canyon, right? Ya know, for someone with a stellar assistant, Avery apparently has “email” but not a “printer” to confirm where he has a reservation, namely the 5-star resort that was just around the bend from El Dumpo.

    S-M: This is going to be exactly like The Phantom Menace where Anakin says “yippee!” a lot and yet characters like Yoda admonish him for having a dark side, that in no way manifests itself during the entire movie, right? Unless the guy is a literal ticking time bomb, I think Clown-9 is already at the threshold for “scary” for newspaper strips, amirite? I mean, it’s not like Frank Miller is ever going to do a guest stint as writer and really darken things up.

  105. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#66): A3G: “Magic”, like deus ex machina? I read a graphic novel series where Deus Ex Machina was a recurring character named “Dex”. The main players would get into an impossible situation, Dex showed up and told everyone it was solved by previously unknown and highly unlikely actions of off screen characters. I think we’ll get three more days of Nina in labor and then on Monday, Margo and Tommie are chatting over breakfast. “Isn’t Nina’s new baby simply adorable?” “Yes, it’s a real miracle!”

    Like Dex used to say, “Sorry, not big on explanation. Can’t stick around in one place for long or I go stale. Ta-ta, folks!”

  106. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:42 am [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#88): Bought them mines from Crankshaft. He said he snuck them in from WWII and then giggled. Have you ever heard Crankshaft giggle? It’s not a pretty sound.

  107. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:42 am [Reply]

    @Shrug (#95):

    Well, the Austrians did cut their teeth on such luminaries as Lombardy and Saxony. And their military competence, and that of their Italian enemies during WWI, is summed up thusly: “The Twelfth Battle of the Isonzo”. The first eleven having been fought to no result, they called in the Germans and their poison gas to help and were finally able to beat the crack Italian forces opposing them.

    Napoleon had an infamous incident the first time he utterly defeated them, when he was a mere General who marched to Vienna and negotiated peace terms on his own initiative, then rode to Paris to deliver the Fait Accompli.

    Apparently, he was angrily pacing around the room in which the negotiations were taking place when he accidentally knocked over an antique tea service that had been in the Habsburg family for generations. Predictably, he flew into a rage:

    “There! That is what I shall do to your Empire! Smash it into a thousand pieces! Austria is the whore of Europe, the other rulers are accustomed to having their way with her whenever the need strikes!”

  108. odinthor
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:44 am [Reply]

    Apt. 3-G. — “Well, do you happen to have a vat of Kool-Aid®?”

    Baldo. — Family traditions, such as abuse of males, comprise an important element of social stability.

    C-Shaft. — There is nothing wrong, in the abstract, with running jokes. But let me introduce you to the concept of “running it into the ground.”

    Curtis. — The only fish market I’m familiar with exclusively offers its commodity scaled and filleted. “Hi, Mom! We were bored in the car, so we prepped the fish for you on the way home.” “Great job, guys—so professional! And to think that you caught Mahi-Mahi so close to New York. What luck!”

    GT. — “The experts say we’re doing it, honey. We’ve sprinkled gasoline throughout the house, and padlocked all the doors and windows on the outside. Now if he just would see the matches we left on the table, and read our sign ‘Light these!’…”

    H&J. — “Generic section”? Feels a lot like home, doesn’t it, Jamaal?

    Herman. — It’s what accountants throw that bothers me.

    Love Is . . . — . . . Demonstrating that bounteous surge of creativity love gives you by entitling your love poem “Poem.”

    Ziggy. — Do any of our ever-erudite CCers know whence came the characteristic “loops” decorative design associated with the traditional toaster? No? Then can anyone lend me a 5-spot? No? Well . . . then I guess I’m done here.

  109. Ed Dravecky
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#61): Please, I beg you, never again make me contemplate Rusty Trail’s pole and tackle. (“Siri, add Brain Bleach to my shopping list.”)

  110. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    SM: Laurel Hardy frightens you? Hey, it wasn’t your ass he kicked in front of a live camera. But dont worry, the cops know who he is.

    MJ: I didn’t call the cops. They operate by their own rules!

  111. bats :[
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:56 am [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#75): re A3G: the Coppertone dog would be cute, but if BMcE wanted to mollify us, he’d have Solange playing with the ties on Edda’s bikini bottoms…
    (Just sayin’, BMcE. And you can use that. Love, bats :[ the beefwit)

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#77): I think the die-off is being attributed to toxic factors in the environment (like water sources, etc.). Which brings up the question: how the hell toxic IS it when you can kill vultures, who are designed to withstand all manner of unpleasantries?

  112. Ed Dravecky
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:58 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#92): Angel food cake and devil’s food cake are critical exceptions to this otherwise stellar guideline.

  113. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:01 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#87): Illustrating the difference between cats and kats, I suppose. As I said a day or so ago, there have been great comic cats. Poosy Gato, Kitty, Fat Freddy Scat, Pat, Arlo’s cat (uhm), and of course, Krazy, all earned my favor. There are a number I didn’t mention, and for good reason.

    Another Great Comic Pet is Quincy in Fox Trot. 100% animal, that one.

    @Shrug (#95): In professional wrestling, the term is “jobber to the stars” (a loser with just enough credibility so that when someone beats him the opponent does get a small egoboo boost, but not so much credibility that anyone seriously expects an upset win).
    Scrap Iron Godowsky! Or was he just in the Denver franchise?

    @Shrug (#98): She used to be The Spirit’s sidekick, but that was seventy years and one round of gender reassignment surgery ago.
    She looks human, so I’ll say there must have been some species reassignment in there as well. I like ol’ Ebony, but he’s… he’s… something else.

  114. Hogenmogen
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:04 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#107): Smashing things and insulting other people’s nationality works in tense meetings? I should try that technique, if I’m ever at a meeting where there is a tea service.

    Maybe I can just reach across the table and bend someone’s paper clip hopelessly out of shape. “There! That is what I shall do to your business plan! Twist it into a pretzel with logic! Your department is the whore of this company, the other managers are accostomed to having their way with it whenever you give an ill concieved PowerPoint presentation!”

  115. Egg
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:06 pm [Reply]

    I think I know of a way to get Greg Evans fired from his syndicate. I am going to work towards that. If it works, Batuik and McEndowney are next…

  116. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:10 pm [Reply]

    @Egg (#115): Include me out.

  117. debussy fields
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:18 pm [Reply]

    MW–Wilbur, long-time fan of the Four Seasons, rewrites one of their big hits: “Dawn, go away, you’re no good for me.”

  118. debussy fields
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:23 pm [Reply]

    MT–This is all fine and dandy, but back at the ranch a new plot develops. Someone has finally alerted Social Services about Rusty being neglected at the end of the pier and they’re sending out none other than the not-so-well-known but just as courageous comic strip social worker, Mike Corridor. This ought to be really good, because Mike Corridor’s favorite method of dealing with perpetrators is to haul off and PUNCH.

  119. cartooncritic2544
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

    @Egg (#115): I’m guessing this is either a virus or hacking. Count me out.

  120. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:34 pm [Reply]

    So who’s dickier, Shoe or Crankshaft?
    Plus, who tips less?

  121. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:36 pm [Reply]

  122. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:37 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#120): Can dickiness be measured quantitatively or is it a state of being?

  123. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:39 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#113):

    George “Scrap Iron” Gadaski (note spelling) was a good example, yes.

    http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/g/george-gadaski.html

    I think the Denver territory was often/usually affilitated with the Minneapolis-based AWA, so we probably grew up watching a lot of the same wrestlers. (I was always a big mark for Nick Bockwinkle, and even earlier for Aldo Bogni. Always been a heel/villain fan.)

  124. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:42 pm [Reply]

    H&L: Really Dot? Really? Seven months of fixing Ditto with your Glare of Stone Cold Hatred and the best you can come up with is “Dummy”?

  125. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:42 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#111):

    “I think the die-off is being attributed to toxic factors in the environment (like water sources, etc.). Which brings up the question: how the hell toxic IS it when you can kill vultures, who are designed to withstand all manner of unpleasantries?”

    I suspect the toxicity comes from uneaten salmon squares and Wilbur-slobbered-on mayonaisse that gets into the water table from Santa Royale pool parties.

  126. bats :[
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

  127. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:45 pm [Reply]

    Shoe: Ted looks freaking delicious!

  128. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:45 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#123): It always sounded like Gadaski, but I only heard it instead of seeing it, so I fixed it for them.

    There was some wrestler who I recall made the transition from palooka cannon fodder to a winner, but it’s all so long ago now. I watched for a while, up to about ’81, and then my interest waned. I did enjoy the crossplay between Rowdy Roddy Piper and Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, which resulted in Heenan (sic?) being tagged with “Pop Goes the Weasel” whenever he showed up, at least for a while. If I see it now, I don’t know what the hell’s going on.

  129. Egg
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:48 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#121): No virus, no hacking – I’d never stoop to that. You’d be amazed at what contacting the syndicates DIRECTLY can do… I know. I’ve done it before. You give them the pros and cons of keeping on board cartoons that do not generate a lot of goodwill and revenue – and all of a sudden the cartoonists get calls to shape the hell up or find another syndicate. :-) Who wouldn’t like to see well-written comics for a change? Something thought provoking or gave someone a bona-fide chuckle – rather than looking at an 18 car traffic accident?

  130. Shrug
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:50 pm [Reply]

    @Egg (#129):

    And you’re proud of this?

    Include me out.

  131. Frank Lee Meidere
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:51 pm [Reply]

    Retail: Years ago I actually did something similar to this, except it was at my favourite greasy spoon diner. At the end of the meal I asked for a milkshake.

    Waiter: “We don’t have any ice cream.”
    Me: “Oh. Well, could I have a root beer float?”
    Waiter: “We don’t have any ice cream.”
    Me: “Right. Of course. Well, how about a sundae?”
    Waiter: “We don’t have any ice cream.”
    Me: “Good lord, what’s wrong with me? All right, I’ll just have a bowl of ice cream.”

    What I really enjoyed was how perfectly he fed me back the necessary line all the way through. Of course, I’d been going there for some time and we’d gotten to know each other pretty well. Still, a good straight man is worth his weight in gold.

  132. Artist formerly known as Ben
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    @cartooncritic2544 (#119): It’s probably a bluff too, but just in case, yeah.

  133. Frank Lee Meidere
    July 5th, 2012 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin\’s Cardboard Box (#14):

    The fact that he has used this exact same clumsy and lazy plot device twice before makes it even more ridiculous. You would think that he would have improved with practice.

    That’s not fair. He has improved with practice. His lame resolutions are becoming far more streamlined and unrealistic.

  134. Awesomeo
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:06 pm [Reply]

    I must say I was most enthused when I saw one of my favorite insults included in the “great” spiderman comic! Now I’m more worried that this makes me lame, although i do really like watching tv…just goes to show some of us are just one fortuitious spiderbite away from epic lameness!

  135. Egg
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:07 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#130): Absolutely proud of it. Why shouldn’t I be? In any other occupation, if a person is performing poorly they need to be told to improve their performance. It’s the same with comics strips. The syndicate can tell the artist that they are concerned about complaints on the lack of continuity, pretentiousness, poor quality, lousy story-telling and such that they are getting from the public. Who wouldn’t like to see Batuik get back to going good stories with some fun in them? Or Evans actually advance his characters past the “tee hee limbo” stage? Or get Brooke back to doing a gag a day cartoon – which is what 9 Chickweed Lane was in the first place? It’s all about revenue and goodwill. Editors need to talk to these artists when they go off the “lame” deep end. THe artist can make changes, the artist can quit, or the syndicate need not renew the contract when that time comes around. It’s all constructive.

  136. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:08 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#122):
    Generally, it’s a qualitative state, but when it comes to tipping and property destruction / physical damage from barbecuing, can also become quantitative, IMO.

    Rex has also upped the ante into quantitative dickishness because he could have refused that 25k outright, the 25k he doesn’t need.

  137. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:10 pm [Reply]

    @cartooncritic2544 (#119): Phui. Egg plans to send long, hand written letters (in green ink) to the syndicate, linking Evans to the Illuminati, the Black Hand, the Tri-Lateral Commission, the New World Order, the Secret Seven, the Rosicrucians, and a Cincinnati model airplane club. All these allegations are true, by the way, attested to by the guy who woke up in a bathtub of icecubes with his kidneys missing.

    // Evans days are numbered. Those long green ink letters always work.

  138. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:11 pm [Reply]

    3G – “OK, Nina, just try and birth the baby through your mouth, the way some frog species do! Now, let’s help you into a headstand …”

  139. bats :[
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:11 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#136): did Rex actually have a chance to refuse the 25K? His buddy was dead when he found out about it — he hasn’t actually *acted* upon it, and I suspect this will be resolved with him giving the money to the widow. And then sailing away on his motorboat. And then his sailboat.

  140. Frank Lee Meidere
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:14 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#71): I’ll have you know that furlongs per fortnight is an extremely useful unit for measuring the speed of plots in legacy comic strips. (Anything faster than 1 fpf is considered breakneck speed, and the writers are cautioned to slow it down.)

  141. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:15 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#137): Hah! See, I was right! (#129)

  142. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:24 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#139): If only Rex had also received Randy’s lifetime gas card he wouldn’t have to sail his motorboat! But really, who can blame him for being frugal since he never freaking practices medicine! I swear he has a full office staff (minus Berna!)focused on collections from the 90′s when he actually worked.

  143. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#114):

    “Smashing things and insulting other people’s nationality works in tense meetings?”

    Well, with the caveat that you are backed by 80,000 muskets.

    The Hapsburgs were used to war being a gentleman’s game, with victories in the field leading to polite exchanges of provinces between royal families. The notion that some upstart would walk in and smash up the accustomed order in Europe was very frightening, so his tactic, accidental or not, was actually highly successful. Audacity, more audacity, and forever audacity! (to quote a revolutionary colleague).

    I imagine it can work well in a business setting, for the same reasons. Calling your teammate “shit in a silk stocking” may also come in handy. “He’s crazy – better give him what he wants or there is no telling what he might do next!”

  144. commodorejohn
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    @brendancalling (#54): Funny how that feels positively wholesome compared with the actual comic.

    A3G – “No ambulances! No C-sections! They play by their rules, not ours.

    Curtis – Pathetic.

    DT – Wait, wait, there’s an arrow missing! I know Joe Staton and Mike Curtis are somewhere in the smoke, because of the explanatory labels, but where? [*]

    FW – …uh, okay then…?

    GT – “This awkward hug-thing! All the experts recommend it!”

    HN – Okay, that’s a pretty good one.

    JP – I. Love. This. Woman. Already. I hope she spends the entire rest of the storyline being brusquely dismissive of Sam ‘n Avery while they try in vain to get some recognition as Important Persons before going fishing. (The construction-worker-orange brassiere is very thematically appropriate, ma’am.)

    Luann – Oh yeah, add human trafficking into the mix. That’s what this strip needs.

    MW – “Mind-state?” How very Psychlo, Wilbur. “Do you have any idea-suggestions? Are there other location-places we should visit? Or perhaps a performance-concert?”

    Phantom – Eh, I’ve seen weirder things on public-access TV.

  145. Egg
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:26 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#141): Thanks for the additional ideas, but they would never believe these guys are part of the Black Hand or whatever. I don’t use green ink – where would I get it? I had nothing to do with these two comics, but we are better off now that CATHY is gone and that DICK TRACY is much better written and illustrated.

  146. Little Guy
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:28 pm [Reply]

    @Señor Tortilla (#y32), JP: …and, my work is done. Wilson could give major boobiage to Olive Oyl.

    9CL: So, what is the sound of one hand drawing?

  147. AhClem
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:35 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#71):
    Years ago, I worked as a drafter one summer for a company that made heat-treating furnaces and conveyor lines. The conveyor drawings needed to show line speeds in feet/second. Just for fun, a couple of us drew them as furlongs/fortnight instead. The chief engineer, of course, made us change them back … but not before he made a copy for himself.

    And don’t get me started on the Metric/English thing. When I started working in bridge design 11 years ago, the agency I work for was in the process of switching everything over to metric, and had already rewritten design and standards manuals. Apparently some of the contractors complained enough to the right people (it’s too hard / too expensive / etc.), and the switch to metric was completely reversed. Today, the only remnant is that concrete rebar is specified in metric sizes, but that’s all.

  148. Snarkotix Addict
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:35 pm [Reply]

    @Esther Blodgett (#72): FW: No, I want to go back to this passport-stealing baboon in the tree. Any chance we could get Les to bare his teeth at the thing so it’ll tear him to pieces?

    A smirk will do (after all, isn’t that our usual reaction?). And it’s inevitable that Les will make some lame pun in the next 5 minutes.

    A3G Wow, Tommie has all the professional ethics that Mark Trail does! This should help get her license to practice stupidity renewed.

  149. Der Schnärkïnätör
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#33):

    Engineers and supervisors thought the o-rings would be fine – this turned out to be a horribly wrong decision, but one can understand how the decision was made.

    Actually, all of the engineers at Morton-Thiokol (the makers of the solid fuel boosters) and I believe that those at NASA As well, were quite adamant the the launch should be scrubbed, due to the cold temperatures that the O-rings experienced the night before. It was the NASA management that push them to launch (based on some extremely limited data) because they feared that they would look bad if they scrubbed yet another launch.

    As is often the case, the engineers were correct.

  150. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:48 pm [Reply]

    Momma shops at the Monsanto big box and bulk store.

  151. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 1:52 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#139):
    Good point – I hope so!
    Still, a decent man who is presumably fairly wealthy would have given it back to the widow, who he knows is broke – he keeps saying “Later, later,” which really irks me.
    Maybe the ex-secretary who won the lottery can help.

  152. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:09 pm [Reply]

    @Egg (#145): Are you kidding? The logical endgame for your plan is to take everything snark worthy out of play. That would NOT make ME better off. I miss bitching about Cathy! Who’s to say DT is better today? I need a flawed, insane strip with an insulated egomanical writer!

  153. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:17 pm [Reply]

    @Der Schnärkïnätör (#149):

    An example of refusal to change your opinion when the facts it is based on turn out to be incorrect.

    The original risk assessment identified the O-rings as critical components, but concluded that there was no danger that the initial O-ring could fail completely. It still recommended a backup O-ring just in case.

    After the first few launches, it was observed that there were cases where the original O-ring did fail completely, and damage was done to the backup. The amount of damage was inversely proportional to the temperature at launch.

    Still, NASA clung to the original conclusion that there was no danger. So they proceeded with the launch, despite the fact that the outside temperature was the coldest yet for a launch day.

    Another design flaw exposed that day was that the shuttle was the first flying vehicle ever designed with no provision having been made for allowing the crew to escape in case of emergency. There were 90 seconds during which the intact flight capsule fell into the ocean, but noone could do anything about it because they were sealed inside…. (to be continued?)

  154. UncleJeff
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:21 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#150): …in the “rock bottom clearance….get it before the EPA learns we still have it” section

  155. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:24 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#143): The Habsburgs were famous for gaining territory through marriage, not war.

    Bella gerant ali?, t? f?lix Austria n?be/ Nam quae Mars ali?s, dat tibi regna Venus,
    “Let others wage war, but thou, O happy Austria, marry; for those kingdoms which Mars gives to others, Venus gives to thee.”

  156. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:27 pm [Reply]

    “There were 90 seconds during which the intact flight capsule fell into the ocean, but noone could do anything about it because they were sealed inside”

    After the catastrophy, NASA set out to design an escape mechanism for future flights. Now, this isn’t brain surgery – it is rocket science. And rocket scientists look at a problem, and they see a rocket as the solution.

    The problem was – if we cut a hole in the flight capsule, it can only go in one location without threatening the structural integrity of the capsule. And that location is such that, if you jump out of the emergency doorway with a parachute, you will immediatly be decapitated by the shuttle’s wing.

    So the rocket scientists looked at the problem and came up with the solution. Let’s use rockets! Every astronaut will have a personal rocket pack. They will then take turns calmly stepping up to the escape hatch, igniting a rocket while standing inside the capsule, and then flying out the door fast enough to miss the wing. No problem at all if you are the first one out the door, and don’t have to slip past six other people’s rocket exhaust in the capsule when it is your turn.

    So the plan went ahead, accompanied by hilarious video of six crash test dummies rocketing out of a flying space capsule with open parachutes.

    Come time for final approval, and the SOP required an outsider be present. This was a flight surgeon, and likely a part time fireman (or strip club patron?), so he had a different perspective.

    How about a big brass pole? You could grab the pole, slide down the side until you are past the wing, then let go and deploy your parachute.

    Sometimes, it helps to get an outside opinion…

  157. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:33 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#155):

    And marrying off Marie Antoinette to the Bourbons was the coup that was going to seal the French alliance for good. So imagine their horror when this Corsican petty noble walked into Vienna and started smashing up the old order, before returning home to complete his own coup de gras.

  158. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:36 pm [Reply]

    Judge Parker: To a woman with a hammer, every smug prick looks like a nail.

  159. Dawn Weston
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:41 pm [Reply]

    Life is brutal.

  160. Wilbur Weston
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    Life is brutal indeed.

  161. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#151): No, heaven help me, I think Rex is acting prudently here by delaying until he knows more. After all, in real time(!?), Foster only died like yesterday or the the day before. Foster actually left the money to Rex, for some unknown reason, not to the widow; Foster’s wishes should at least be considered. And, oh yes, the widow is under suspicion of murder.

    That said, Rex probably cannot keep the money himself, as he was Foster’s physician, and that would raise all sorts of ethical flags, and as you say, he really doesn’t need it. So he may eventually give it to the widow, if she is cleared, or to Foster’s daughter, or he may give the lot to charity. But he is certainly right to wait before deciding.

  162. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:43 pm [Reply]

  163. Dennis Jimenez
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:45 pm [Reply]

    @Dood (#162): Condiments are brutal….

  164. Mars
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:49 pm [Reply]

    “Something about the crazed madman who sent a theaterful of people running in terror and incapacitated her super-powered husband frightens Mary Jane.”

    Haven’t you spent the last three weeks explaining in detail how pathetic this villain is and the last six YEARS explaining how easily Spider-Man is incapacitated? Why the sudden change of heart now, Josh? I don’t get it.

  165. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:50 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#157): ..returning home to complete his own coup de gras.

    Oh my! A “stroke of fat”! Good one there, Dr. Box!

    // Thank goodness I never typo!

  166. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:54 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#165):

    The aristocracy had grown fat and bloated, living off of the sweat of the peasant’s brows?

  167. Popeye
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:55 pm [Reply]

    Life is Bluto…

    A-gah-gah-gah-gah-gah-gah!

  168. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:56 pm [Reply]

    @Popeye (#167): To Andy Capp, life is blotto.

  169. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:56 pm [Reply]

    Maybe Wilbur is calling Giorgio for a little Italian sex therapy with Dawn, seeing as nothing else worked.

  170. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:58 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#161):
    Good point about the ethics. I hadn’t considered that, as Rex just seems to play a Dr. on the (haha) funny pages.

    Baby Blues, yesterday and today – way to send Mom into a Valium binge.

  171. Little Guy
    July 5th, 2012 at 2:59 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Exercise: Describe, in detail, how Quill’s depature back to Australia is a) Tiffany’s fault or b) Ann Eiffle’s fault. Remember to show your work. Logic need not be applied.

  172. Liam
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:00 pm [Reply]

    @Drew Funk (#5):

    Marijuanna. It is the in plant for comic strip characters to grow at the moment.

  173. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:01 pm [Reply]

    How does Wilbur know Giorgio Armani, anyway?

  174. Liam
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:02 pm [Reply]

    A3G-We could kill you and pull the baby from your dead lifeless body. It happens all the time in Greek mythology.

  175. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:02 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#166): Of course. Peasant brow sweat is notoriously fattening.

    // I’ve been trying to cut back, but the diet peasant brow sweat just isn’t the same. How many kilometers do I have to jog to lose a kilogram?

  176. Liam
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    @Little Guy (#171):

    Quill’s father was hired to kill Ann Eiffle and he did that off panel.

  177. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:04 pm [Reply]

    @Little Guy (#146): “9CL: So, what is the sound of one hand drawing?”

    FAP, FAP, FAP…. ahhhh…..

  178. Liam
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#15):

    I wouldn’t worry about it. It is the part of leaving the bassinet on Walt’s doorstep.

  179. Government Cheese
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    MW: Giorgio: “The first thing you should do is to stop calling me! I’m just your travel agent. Also, you should wear pants on the Spanish Steps. No one wants to see the liverspots on your legs.”

  180. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:10 pm [Reply]

    FC: My first thought was that if a watermelon had one big seed like a peach that it would look just like Jeffy’s head. My second thought is that Jeffy’s Head is now my new favorite band name.

  181. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:11 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#175):

    “diet peasant brow sweat just isn’t the same”

    You could be making it wrong, and once again a typo is to blame! Sweat off of the brow of a dieting peasant really doesn’t taste any differently – hell, they are all starving anyway! You need the sweat from a dying peasant to really get any significant reduction in calories.

    The French Revolution produced a number of reforms, including, of course … the Metric System! Unfortunately (or not), the attempt to apply the same standardization to the calendar was not widely popular. Switching to a ten-day week was all well and good, but if you still only got one day off per week, it didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that your leisure time had just been reduced significantly. The seven-day week was soon reinstated.

  182. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:15 pm [Reply]

    @Sans Sense (#180): Is Dolly referring to a cling or freestone peach?

  183. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:16 pm [Reply]

    @Dood (#173): You didn’t know? Wilbur started out as a Chippendale dancer, but eventually got a gig as a top European male fashion model. It was his smoldering good looks that made a name for Armani in gent’s suits in the first place. Giorgio owes him big time. That was long ago, of course, before Wilbur found his true metier as an advice columnist, and amateur sandwich auteur.

  184. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    Shoe: Word of advice, Ted. Don’t order an omelette. Roz hates that.

  185. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    @Dood (#182): Since it Dolly, I’d have to assume clingy.

  186. bats :[
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#151): oooh, if nothing else I can see Berna (the rich ex-receptionist) hooking up the Widow Mabel with her brother Dexter! Should we plan a December-December wedding in … let’s say, December? Will this current storyline be over in time to plan? Will Rex walk Mabel down the aisle? Will June be the matron of honor in a scandalously slinky gown? Or will it be the cowgirl Iris, in assless chaps? So many questions!

    You know you want to see this.

  187. Anonymous
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    @Sans Sense (#152): No I’m not kidding – and there is PLENTY to still snark about: Gil Thorpe, Mary Worth, Rex Morgan, Amazing Spider-Man, Momma, Family Circus, etc. My plan is just to get rid of the worst unfunny offenders so that maybe – just maybe – better talented cartoonists will have a shot of taking their place. So yes, I fully plan to contact the syndicates of those three loser comic strips. If they improve – great. Everyone wins (except for those that need to bitch because they LIKE to bitch – which makes no sense) or maybe it will contribute to the end of their contracts. Overall the public wins.

  188. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:21 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#183): I always figured Wilbur as more of an international doofus of mystery.

  189. bats :[
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:22 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#166): I think Coup de Gras is the Weston family motto.

  190. This Guy
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:23 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#165): You may not be aware just how hard it is to get D&D players to stop pronouncing it that way–or to get them to pronounce “melee” anywhere near correctly (I’ve heard “mee-lee,” “meh-lee,” and even “meal.”)

  191. Dood
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:23 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#186): Does even cowgirl Iris get the blues?

  192. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:26 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#187): You are on your own, Anonymous Egg. It’s the CC’s Prime Directive: We may observe; we must snark; we must not intervene. Our powers of snarkiness are so vast, that used improperly they could tear the fabric of the comicverse, and leave it boggled.

  193. S.Stout
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:26 pm [Reply]

    @Little Guy (#171):

    a) Tiffany called U.S. Immigration Services and said Quill’s family are spies. If she can’t have Quill, nobody will!

    b)Ann Eiffel told the cops she was bit by a wealthy Australian, in hopes for a big payday. However, they were just deported instead.

  194. Droopy Says
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:27 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (y#323): I don’t call them rocket scientists. It’s just that people seem so obsessed with what is or is not “rocket science”.

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to sound like I was snarking at you.

    From the typically imprecise reporting of the event; it was never clear whether the problem was two sets of units in use, unknown to the other party, or a sloppy job of unit conversion.

    Problems in space exploration are usually complicated, but even good reporters get screwed by the KISS approach to presenting a story. It doesn’t help that most news outlets have “science reporters” who are expected to cover all fields of science and technology, without any training in any of them.

  195. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:33 pm [Reply]

    @This Guy (#190): Good point. From Wiktionary coup de grace:

    “Some English speakers, aware that some final consonants are dropped in French, overcompensate by dropping the final /s/ sound in grâce, making this sound like French coup de gras (“stroke of grease”). This mispronunciation is quickly becoming ubiquitous and is being popularized by the media (e.g., it occurs twice in Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill Volume 2).”

  196. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:37 pm [Reply]

    @S.Stout (#193): Is his full name Quill Murdoch?

  197. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:37 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#189): And Cut the Grass is the Plugger motto.

    So is Cut the Cheese for that matter.

  198. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:41 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#192): That can also be done with a torque wrench.

  199. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:46 pm [Reply]

    @Little Guy (#171):

    First, his full name is Quill Wallaby. No middle name, the character isn’t fleshed out to that extent!

    Second, here is the real story of how his father had to suddenly leave the country, reposted from yesterday:

    “I realized that this is all just dad’s cover for the real story. Apparently, underage local celebrity Sheridan St. Louis (aka Tiffany) has a portfolio of pictures of the two of them in compromising, and highly acrobatic, positions. In addition to a large cash payment, her other demand is that he leave the country immediately.

    Meanwhile, TJ was last seen walling up his cut from the scheme behind the drywall…”

  200. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:51 pm [Reply]

    For some, life is butthurt.

  201. Phred22
    July 5th, 2012 at 3:52 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#9): It depends. Did Fritzi strip? For real?

  202. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:15 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#194): The wiki article on the “metric mixup” here is very good, and includes a link to NASA’s actual post-mortem.

    The NASA software specification did call for all software to use metric units. One subprogram, called SM_FORCES did not follow the spec, and used English units instead.*

    It seems to me that it would have been very difficult to catch this problem with physical testing prior to launch. Only a very intensive software audit would have found it.

    *It is interesting. There is some programmer out there, somewhere, who must be perfectly well aware that he personally destroyed a half billion dollar spacecraft. “I never got that memo!”

    // I expect he moved on to work in the investment banking industry.

  203. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:22 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#202):

    A manual code review, which should be required for all subroutines, should have caught the deviation from specifications.

    Ditto for integration testing.

    Where physical or PQ testing is not possible, such as is the case here, the use of quality tools such as code reviews is even more essential. For a half-billion dollar spacecraft, the QA team should have ensured that a documented review of every subroutine be conducted.

  204. KreatureFeatures
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:24 pm [Reply]

    What comic strip isn’t improved by suddenly introducing a cat, ala Funky Winkerbean? The dudes in Judge Parker could open their fishing gear bags and find a cute kitten – laughter would ensue all around, and their lack of reservations would be instantly forgiven. The gang in For Better or Worse would zip right through airport security, if a luggage check revealed a rascally feline. And how great would it be if Quill suddenly unzipped his trousers and pulled out a hissing tomcat?

  205. Alter Ego
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:26 pm [Reply]

    love is… “Roses are red, windows are glass…”

  206. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:27 pm [Reply]

    @KreatureFeatures (#204): And in A3G they’ll pull a cat out of Nina.

  207. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:45 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#82): But they’re not selling Bushmiller art.

    Gilchrist isn’t selling Larry Whittington* art either — what’s your point? Or is that your way of saying only Ernie Bushmiller could do Fritzi justice? If so, I think we’ll have to agree to disagree.

    *Fritzi Ritz’s actual creator!

  208. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:53 pm [Reply]

    @Frank Lee Meidere (y#321): I’ve been thinking that for a while now. When urban granola-crunchy techy over-educated nerd me is doing the same things that the cartoonist describes as being typical of “Pluggers” something’s a bit off.

  209. gleeb
    July 5th, 2012 at 4:55 pm [Reply]

    @odinthor (#108): A small amount of googling suggests that the Toastmaster loops (and they are apparently trademarked) were introduced in 1939, in a design under the direction of Jean Otis Reinecke.

  210. Peanut Gallery
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:04 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#45): Thanks for sharing! (I mean, for the stories; the vultures can thank you later.)

    @Frank Lee Meidere (#131): Ah, the classic Sweet Roll sketch from Electric Company!

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#183):

    before Wilbur found his true metier as an advice columnist

    Or in the U.S., his true 1.094 yards as an advice columnist.

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#192): Does this mean you’ve had second thoughts about your remarkably successful Barney Google campaign?

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#203):

    Ditto for integration testing.

    Might as well send Dot, too, then.

  211. The Cynical One
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:14 pm [Reply]

    So, Mary Jane is also feed up with Spider Man and wants more Clown-9 action. I think we can all get behind this idea.

  212. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:15 pm [Reply]

    FW: Death Cat!!!

    Even if our new protagonist isn’t Gato de la Muerte , I still wouldn’t want to hang around it. After all, it just spent upwards of 48 hours being squished in the cargo holds of various unpressurized aircraft, and it is probably pretty well pissed off by now. It probably handed that passport over to the baboon out of shear spite.

  213. Sequitur
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:17 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#210):

    Ah, the classic Sweet Roll sketch from Electric Company!

    Is that Nehemiah Scutter in that sketch?

  214. S. Marty Pannts
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#210): I have long believed that Rev. Scudder is in fact Barney Google, hence his “success” in getting a return appearance (albeit brief) of BG.

  215. Alison
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:31 pm [Reply]

    “Luann”: Quill just announced five minutes ago that he has to leave, and Luann has already stopped bawling and started making dumb jokes. And just a few weeks ago Luann was dying to go to Juilliard and then got talked out of it by her parents in what appeared to be maybe ten minutes and was all, “Oooh, community college will do fine!” What I am saying here is, Luann is in for a lifetime of being taken advantage of by people who know she will get over any crisis ASAP.

    “Hey, Luann, sorry I hit you with my car.”
    “WAAAHHH! IT HURTS!”
    “Luann, the thing is, you really don’t need a doctor. Or a lawyer. I think you’re okay. And, doctors and lawyers are expensive.”
    “*Sniff*. Okey-dokey. Hey, [extremely stupid and corny punchline about the situation]!”
    “Yeah, ha ha ha. Look, anyway, let’s never speak of this again, okay?”
    “Okay!”

  216. Droopy Says
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:32 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#202): After reading the NASA post-mortem, my first thought is “how do you explain those multiple issues to non-technical people, when it’s so much easier to say ‘Haha, they mixed up metric and English units’?”

    The problem might have shown up with enough simulation work, especially with someone saying “The software we need isn’t ready yet; what’s going on here?” (Although JPL has always had a degree of institutional arrogance–the Viking landers were sent to Mars before their software was fully developed; it was assumed they could get the program finished and uploaded to the landers before they reached Mars.)

    Well, I can’t even figure out why tourists at Kilimanjaro would go directly from the airport to the tour, without spending some time at a hotel to sleep and get a decent meal or two after a transoceanic flight.

  217. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    July 5th, 2012 at 5:38 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#192): Now, now, let’s not be too hasty. If Mr. Egg would like to add, say, Reply All to his list, wouldn’t we want to look the other way?

  218. Doug Puthoff
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:09 pm [Reply]

    GT–Maybe Masky McDeath from “Funky Winkerbean” will make an appearance. I haven’t seen him in over five years.

    The Unspectacular Spider-Man: What frightens me is that acutally human beings are producing this dreck.

  219. Zerowolf
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:14 pm [Reply]

    A3G: Salad tongs, Nina, salad tongs.

  220. Sans Sense
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:20 pm [Reply]

    JP: Sam thought bubble, third panel – “I am too a party person!”

  221. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:21 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#210): Does this mean you’ve had second thoughts about your remarkably successful Barney Google campaign?

    Well, I never lobbied King Features or John Rose directly. Everything I did was from this site. Just goes to show how powerful snark-fu can be.

  222. Zerowolf
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:22 pm [Reply]

    RMMD: “I guess this is your lucky day,” snickers Iris as she draws a .45 from her purse.

  223. Frank Lee Meidere
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:26 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#181): Not to mention the ten-hour clock and the ten-month year. As I’ve always said, the French have the same relationship to logic that ducks have to water: they love paddling around in it, but in the end it just rolls off their backs.

  224. The Mary Meddler
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:35 pm [Reply]

    FW: Three months from now…

    Les: We’ve made it! We climbed Kilamanjaro!

    Summer: This is a good time to tell you, Dad… I’m gay.

    Les: (Silence… Then FALLS OFF MOUNTAIN PEAK TO HIS DEMISE.)

    Summer: Wow, that was liberating!

  225. Señor Tortilla
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:37 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Quill, a Luann x Tiffany shipper? Is he a commenter on GoComics?

    MT: He’s hugging the woman he accused of murder?

    A3G: “Okay, I’ve got sterile latex gloves on. This may feel a little bit uncomfortable…”

  226. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:39 pm [Reply]

  227. Mr K Martin
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:43 pm [Reply]

    H&L: Do you realize that if Ditto uses his amazing powers to wish for armageddon, we will not only soon be rid of this strip but the last few weeks of it should be more entertaining than usual?

  228. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:44 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#216): After reading the NASA post-mortem, my first thought is “how do you explain those multiple issues to non-technical people, when it’s so much easier to say ‘Haha, they mixed up metric and English units’?”

    Especially because, when you get down to brass tacks, that is exactly what happened.

    The problem might have shown up with enough simulation work.

    True, it might have, though this was 1998 here. It would be easier now, Moore’s Law and all. Nevertheless, @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#203) is right when he says that a software review would and should have caught it.

    And the review board noted that. One hopes all their recommendations, which seem very reasonable, were adopted.

  229. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:46 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#217): Gosh, I hadn’t thought of that. Never mind.

  230. Frank Lee Meidere
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:47 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#192): We must not interfere? Do I really have to mention one Barney Google?

    Overall, however, I agree. Our job is not to improve anything — our job is to enjoy ourselves at the expense of shoddy workmanship. I have to admit, however, I wouldn’t mind seeing a few talented modern cartoonists get a chance, but judging by the irrational devotion so many people have to second-rate comics like Mary Worth, even if these disappeared overnight, they wouldn’t accept any replacement that wasn’t equally bad.

  231. odinthor
    July 5th, 2012 at 6:57 pm [Reply]

    @gleeb (#209): Thanks! They (the toaster loops) seem to have made a curiously indelible impression on the human mind. Now, about that five-spot . . .

  232. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:06 pm [Reply]

    @Frank Lee Meidere (#230): You are right, dead trees are not all that amenable to new talent. One of my favorites among the newer of the strips, Scary Gary, ran in my local dead tree for a couple of months, but was dropped after too many people wrote in that they didn’t understand it, or that because as it had a vampire, a demon, and a ghost as main characters, it somehow promoted satanism. Then there’s the case of Cow and Boy, a really brilliant strip which is notable for winning unpopularity contests.

    Anyway, as a result of bourbon babe, unbuckled’s irrefutable arguments, I’ve withdrawn my Prime Directive suggestion. Fais ce que tu voudras.

  233. Señor Tortilla
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:09 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#217): Yes, yes, yessss! Reply All isn’t even worth snarking on, and doesn’t smack of any political agenda! Truly the worst!

  234. Dale
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:15 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#216):

    Have you ever watched the Connections series?

    A little while ago, measured in non-MKS time units, it occurred to me that we are talking about rocket science and unit systems because someone mentioned a 24 oz. beer bottle in my electronic presence.

  235. bats :[
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:22 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#232): Cul de Sac didn’t make the cut in our local paper when it was trying to replace FOOB. I think we got saddled with Argyle Sweater.
    And I wonder if Thatababy is in any dead tree editions…

  236. Illustrator Steve
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:25 pm [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#91): “You’re absolutely right. You’ll not that a cat NEVER talks to the police without a lawyer present.”

    I can easily vouch for that. We have three cats, a beautiful 2 year old siamese cat, a huge 5 year old Norwiegen Forest cat and a 17 year old Maine Coon cat. None of which have even once talked with any of our local law enforcement officers, with or withour their lawyers present. However, Even though they’ve never even bothered to ever read the Mark Trail strip, they do seem to enjoy it because they usually relieve themselves on it when it happens to be on top of the recycling pile.

  237. Government Cheese
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:46 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Some fellow Curmudgeon was stating earlier that the GoComics peeps are going nuts over this plot line. After reading through the comments, it does appear that many of these LuannLovers are up in arms. I am reminded of that Stephen King movie, “Misery”.

  238. Droopy Says
    July 5th, 2012 at 7:51 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#234): I’ve watched Connections, although it’s been a while. But it’s on YouTube so I can catch it again.

  239. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    Moose & Molly — Bob Weber, Senior must have gotten a really good deal on black ink. Not only are Moose and his friends wearing black bathing suits, but there’s even an all-black(!) rabbit:

    http://www.jsonline.com/comics/32402404.html?feature_id=Moose&feature_date=2012-07-05

    But at least the swimming pool doesn’t have black water — like the swimming pools in Hi & Lois!

  240. Peanut Gallery
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#213): Maybe if he were doing some Yellow Submarine cosplay…

  241. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:15 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#226): To quote Señor Wences: “S’alright!” I really don’t like the current incarnation of Margo Magee, but plenty of people have sang her praises here. And that’s fine by me.

  242. Pinball Swordfish
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:17 pm [Reply]

    no doubt highly toxic to all living things that come in contact with it (e.g., Francis, Momma)

    Ha! Ha! Momma and Francis aren’t “living things”!

  243. commodorejohn
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:18 pm [Reply]

    @Government Cheese (#237): We can only hope.

  244. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:24 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#235): Cul de Sac didn’t make the cut? That, my friends, is an irrefutable argument for general population’s lack of theology and geometry.

  245. GrafSpee
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:28 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#22): Puritans & Pornographers. That would be an interesting name for a RPG.

  246. Peanut Gallery
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:33 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#234): Not only that, but it spawned threads about NASA, Napoleonic wars, the Habsburgs, professional wrestling, and the correct pronunciation of “coup de grace”!

  247. Snarkotix Addict
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:48 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#244): Well, darn! I miss Cul-de-sac. The Post carried it when I was in DC.

  248. GrafSpee
    July 5th, 2012 at 8:54 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#75): Re: Sinfest. Is this the first time that Sinfest has had a character from a different comic strip appear? I can’t remember seeing another one (and there’s too many years of back story to go through to easily check).

  249. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:02 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#246): Yeah, that was one fulgent thread. If only we could have worked something in about sentence diagramming or slide rules, it would have been perfect!

    // Wait! I just did!

  250. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:05 pm [Reply]

    @Dawn Weston (#159): To Bleeker: The Rechargeable Dog, life is roboto.

  251. Egg
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:06 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#192): Oh I didn’t expect people here were going to get behind it and support me, but I’m still going to do my best to make things more uncomfortable for those 3 candy ass cartoonists. So we may lose some snarkiness on the site – the positive is we could get better comics and stories out of them. Oh course I have to remember that some people here like to bitch for the sake of bitching, and those people will flush out a flaw in even a perfectly sound and funny comic, just to get their snark fix for the day in. So you can’t please everyone.

  252. Calico
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:10 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#186):
    Of course I want to see this, and maybe more. : )

  253. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:11 pm [Reply]

  254. Mr. O'Malley
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:19 pm [Reply]

    Mysterious mass die-off of vultures solved

    The catastrophic decline of griffon vultures in south Asia is being caused not by a mysterious disease, as had been thought, but a common painkiller given to sick cattle.

    If the treated animal dies and is eaten by vultures, a single meal can be enough to kill the bird. The scientists who made the discovery now want the drug banned from veterinary use and are holding a meeting next week with officials from Nepal, India and Pakistan.

    Griffon vultures are huge scavengers and used to be ubiquitous in south Asia. But their population has declined drastically since the mid-1990s, and one species is near extinction.

    As a result, animal carcasses rot outside villages, attracting rabies-ridden packs of dogs. The Parsee religious community in India is also in crisis, as it disposes of its dead by feeding them to vultures.

    Diclofenac, which can cause kidney damage, is very heavily prescribed by local vets, and its use increased over the same time period as the vulture decline. The cheap drug is used to treat lameness and injury – common conditions before a buffalo or cow dies.

    Rhys Green of the UK’s Royal Society of the Protection for Birds calculates that only one in 250 dead cattle needs to have been recently treated with diclofenac to cause a decline in vultures of 30 per cent per year – about what has been observed.

  255. Ukulele Ike
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:32 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#192): Yeah, we’re like “The Watcher” in th’ Silver Age Marvel comics.

  256. Dale
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:32 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#249):

    I mentioned slide rule accuracy at the outset.
    Sentence diagramming – what’s up with that? Neither subject has a point, but the slide rule one is easily filled in.

  257. Ukulele Ike
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:35 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#226): The current Fritzi Ritz IS a bit….”thick” for my taste, as well.

  258. Señor Tortilla
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:45 pm [Reply]

    Curtis – OK, I know this one was lifted directly from Calvin & Hobbes. That’s shameless!

    @Ukulele Ike (#257): Just Googled “Fritzi Ritz”. Wow! Now that’s an “Aunt Fritzi” I never knew…

  259. Ukulele Ike
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:46 pm [Reply]

    @GrafSpee (#248): Oh, god, no. Sinfest has done many such genuflections to established comics.

    Do yourself a HUGE favor….order in fifty tacos and a case of good beer,and get out the hot sauce….read the whole archive. Tat’s a friggin’ genius.

  260. Artist formerly known as Ben
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:49 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#207): You really do learn something new every day, if you keep your eyes open. I had never known that Bushmiller didn’t create Fritzi Ritz. Nor did I know that the strip only became Nancy after Bushmiller took it over from Whittington. So that means that Fritzi is sort of the Barney Google to Nancy’s Snuffy Smif. Except she shows up more often, for reasons one may only guess at.

  261. Nehemiah Scudder
    July 5th, 2012 at 9:50 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#256): Oh, that is right, you did mention slide rule accuracy.

    A few months back, there was an epic thread about the proper methods of diagramming sentences, whether it was still taught, where, different styles etc. etc.. You must have missed it. Frank Lee Meidere had some sort of crazy system he advocated involve underlining various parts of speech in various ways – completely bogus, you understand.[*] Whereas the rest of us advocated the “fishbone” style that all decent literate people use.

  262. Rocky Stoneaxe
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:11 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#257): If by “thick” you mean Gilchrist’s Fritzi Ritz could be a character in Judge Parker

  263. commodorejohn
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:17 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#259): I’ve been working through it again in recent weeks…God damn is that a great comic. (I’m almost caught up to where it was when I started archive-binging some two years ago!)

  264. The Ridger
    July 5th, 2012 at 10:25 pm [Reply]

    JP: I can’t believe that Peaches doesn’t know her email wasn’t received. This is all part of her plot to kill her “dad” and inherit his billions, framing the convenient patsy for it, isn’t it? Please?

  265. Poteet
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:07 pm [Reply]

    FW — I’m waiting for this cat subplot to unfold a little further, but I already feel a major rant coming on.

  266. Droopy Says
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:08 pm [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#264): No, Peaches is lying low, terrified by the recent death of her friendly competitor Al Chavez. Just today she found a gum wrapper bearing the cryptic message “YOU ARE NEXT!”

  267. Uncle Lumpy
    July 5th, 2012 at 11:11 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#266):

    Is that the kind of gum people use when they want to indicate who is next?

  268. bats :[
    July 6th, 2012 at 12:00 am [Reply]

    @Mr. O’Malley (#254): thanks for the (extraordinarily-depressing but informative) article.

  269. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    July 6th, 2012 at 12:23 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#265): Please rant! I’ve been holding one in myself since the beast first made an appearance.

  270. Droopy Says
    July 6th, 2012 at 12:27 am [Reply]

    Spiderzero: Nothing raises Peter Parker’s spirits like having someone to blame for his failings.

    Creepy Les: Obnoxious, humorless, cat-hating creeps who lack any redeeming qualities. When did this strip turn into Gasoline Alley?

    JP: That’s right, Peaches, let them know that you’re in trouble with the law. When did this strip turn into Mark Trail?

    Family Circus: His soul crushed by life in the Keane Kompound, Jeffy cannot even hope for an accidental death to spare him from a bleak future as a legacy-strip artist.

    Pluggers: Once the Viagra fails, Pluggers seek any excuse not to dream about sex.

    Mark Trail: Better hurry, Rusty, before the bignorns fly south for the winter! And be sure to avoid the Abandoned Lost Forest Mine with its easily-recognized vaginal entrance! Remember that Lassie does not make house calls!

  271. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    July 6th, 2012 at 12:28 am [Reply]

    Of all the things to catch my eye in the comics today, I am most mesmerized by that strange droopy dog sculpture on the bookshelf in Judge Parker. What a peculiar object.

  272. bats :[
    July 6th, 2012 at 12:44 am [Reply]

    Dear Lord…Cherry and Rusty are so bored waiting for Mark, they’ve hennaed their hair (I suspect Pop Doc got the same treatment, with less sucessful results). As for Andy and Sassy…

  273. Mr. O'Malley
    July 6th, 2012 at 12:47 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#271): Maybe Sam will acquire some valuable cartoon memorabilia while he is there.

  274. Droopy Says
    July 6th, 2012 at 1:18 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#271): Peculiar? No, it looks nothing like my peculiar cousin. It looks more like my aubt Depressia.

    Meanwhile, what’s happened to Rusty Trail? Did the full moon rise and he turn into a teenager? The only thing that would be more astonishing would be if Luann developed a pair of lips.

  275. Poteet
    July 6th, 2012 at 1:24 am [Reply]

    FW — Let’s examine this layer cake of total gross Batiuk obnoxiousness, shall we? So many layers. There’s the cartoonist who uses the life of a kitten as a throwaway joke. There’s the big jerk cat owner who didn’t neuter his cat. Then the big jerk cat owner lets a kitten get into his luggage, indicating that the kittens are being allowed to run around his house with no real supervision or care, not to mention that anyone who actually cared about the kittens would be PARTICULARLY careful to keep them out of luggage headed for a foreign country. There’s the backhanded slap at all the customs and air terminal people who somehow missed the kitten. Then the cartoonist has the kitten survive the trip to Africa, which in real life probably would have resulted in a suffering kitten followed by a dead kitten. Then there’s the reaction of our alleged heroine Summer, who is stupid enough to think the entire situation is amusing. I know Batiuk does obnoxious things over and over, but this subplot in particular really, really, really reeks.

  276. Poteet
    July 6th, 2012 at 1:27 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#269): Just saw your comment, and thanks for the invitation, which, as you can see, I accepted:-).

  277. Mr. O'Malley
    July 6th, 2012 at 1:34 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#275): Just a week ago I was going through airport security and some idiot put their little dog through the X-ray machine in a carrier. The security people gave her a royal chewing-out. That’s what happens in the real world.

  278. Poteet
    July 6th, 2012 at 1:48 am [Reply]

    @Mr. O’Malley (#277): Yay for the security people. FW makes the real world look good.

  279. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    July 6th, 2012 at 3:09 am [Reply]

    MT: Rusty has aged 3-5 years while Mark was solving the big gum wrapper case. Still hideous, though.

  280. tallyHO
    July 6th, 2012 at 3:31 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail:

    GASP!
    First they kill off Doc then they kill off Andy Dog (replacing him with the four-legged equivalent of a goldfish) then they make Rusty turn into a real boy.
    Jiminy Cricket! Where’s Jiminy Cricket!

    This story arc will be the last we see of the former puppet/current real boy. bon voyage, Rustynald Goofylookin. Trail. Make sure your camera gives Mark the clues he needs to solve your murder.

    //maybe it is just me, but i think this storyline might involve a bear, a giant animal or two, but, sadly, no pancakes that are eaten.

  281. tallyHO
    July 6th, 2012 at 3:33 am [Reply]

    Actually, this seems to be a running theme with MT, no giant fish or pancakes are harmed in the making of the comic strip.

    Quick, someone give Elrod a Congressional Medal of Hunh?

  282. tallyHO
    July 6th, 2012 at 3:41 am [Reply]

  283. Bill the Butcher
    July 6th, 2012 at 4:15 am [Reply]

    The only way Evans can salvage something from this Luann storyline is if Luann waits, still cracking stupid jokes, her eyelids at half mast as usual, till the Feather leaves her house, and then collapses, hysterically sobbing, in the last panel of tomorrow’s strip. But that would require actual character planning, so it won’t happen.

  284. Alfred E. Neuman
    July 6th, 2012 at 4:33 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#271): @Mr. O’Malley (#273): @Droopy Says (#274): No need to go all the way to that Cherry Creek firetrap. I got yer Droopy Dog bobblehead memorabilia right here. While you’re at it, don’t forget to pick up an Alfred E. Neuman bobblehad. I could use the royalties.

  285. Vanya
    July 6th, 2012 at 4:37 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#275): I missed all that, I kind of assumed the kitten had just slipped in the guy’s luggage back in whatever Tanzanian town they just left. Because, you know, even Batiuk wouldn’t be so stupid as to assume a kitten could survive a trip from the US to Africa, would he?

  286. Vanya
    July 6th, 2012 at 4:39 am [Reply]

    Oh, I was still thinking of yesterday’s strip. Just say today’s FW. Wow.

  287. gleeb
    July 6th, 2012 at 6:13 am [Reply]

    Ham Shears: No, I don’t think that is real jadeite. Love the expression in the last panel, though.

    ‘shaft: It does my shriveled heart good to see sour old misanthropist Ed in such pain. Maybe he’ll never walk again.

    ‘bean: Well, at least the guide doesn’t smirk when saying that. He’s probably just annoyed because he can’t find his shades.

    At the Bolshevik Hotel: Process server? Oh, that’ll cut Sam to the quick!

    Pluggers: …still have wonderful memories of those sexy, sexy stevedores.

  288. John C Fremont
    July 6th, 2012 at 6:29 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#275): You should write a letter to his syndicate.

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#271): I dunno. It looks a lot like Wilford Brimley to me.

    FW – “Cheetah chip?” Is that supposed to be a joke? I mean, it’s placed at the end of a string of dialogue in the exact same spot as one would ordinarily place a punchline, but it does not cause laughter. Irritability? You bet. Laughter? No. Maybe I’m just ticked off about the kitten-in-a-dufflebag bit.

    I don’t get it. And I’m glad.

  289. Liam
    July 6th, 2012 at 7:06 am [Reply]

    Pluggers-Pluggers long for the day when tattoos would tell you who the undesirables of society are and to avoid them.

  290. Droopy Says
    July 6th, 2012 at 7:47 am [Reply]

    Worthless Winkerbeans: If you’ve ever raised an orphan kitten, you know they need kitten milk replacement until they’re about six weeks old. They aren’t ready for solid food before then, and regular milk isn’t enough. So when you have a kitten that’s only a few weeks old, you pretty much condemn it to starvation when you “leave it with the cooks.” Only Batiuk could take such an Elrodian plot development and make it so thoroughly loathsome. There may be an unknown dimension in which that’s regarded as an accomplishment.

  291. Vanya
    July 6th, 2012 at 8:15 am [Reply]

    FW: On some level I have to admire the incredible condescension of a writer who thinks a one-in-a-lifetime trip to Africa isn’t sufficient to sustain reader interest. Nope, better throw an abandoned kitten in there! Got to keep Granny Margaret reading.

    On the other hand you have Mary Worth where just mentioning a new Italian city every day is apparently all you need.

  292. GrafSpee
    July 6th, 2012 at 9:00 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#259): I’ll have to go back and look. I have the original three books of Sinfest and I’ve read through the entire archive, but it’s been years since I’ve looked at them.

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