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Sadly, agriculture is forever beyond their intellectual capabilities

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 9/13/12

There’s definitely an interesting socioeconomic analysis to be done on the ways in which certain activities that were once deadly earnest attempts to gather food came, in an era of relative caloric abundance, to be luxury pastimes instead. But I’m hard-pressed to explain how Snuffy and Lukey, who never had any kind of job when times were flush, have had their lives affected by extra-Holler financial crises. Perhaps there’s less demand for chickens, Hootin’ Holler’s sole export, which means there are fewer chickens for the two old rascals to steal? More likely, “th’ economic downturn” refers not to anything that would affect us flatlanders, but rather to some apocalyptic event that severed the last tenuous economic tendril connecting Hootin’ Holler to the outside world, leaving its isolated residents with no option but to turn back to the forests and streams for sustenance. This crisis presumably happened decades ago, and so what we’re seeing here is a prequel strip showing the genesis of the Snuffy Smithiverse as we’ve come to know it.

Mary Worth, 9/13/12

Hey, remember when Dawn got dumped by her boyfriend and she was incredibly depressed and then her dad took her on a cruise and they almost died but then were rescued and it made Dawn re-evaluate everything and decide to live a more meaningful life? Well, in order to live that more meaningful life, she bowed to Mary’s demand that she volunteer at the hospital, and, oh look, she’s found a Dave-replacement — a similarly bland and blond fellow with a monosyllabic all-American name — on her very first day there. How efficient! I guess she can stop volunteering now, mission accomplished!

Herb and Jamaal, 9/13/12

Shorter Herb: “I only married my wife because she’s physically attractive, and now I can’t understand why she’s mad at me all the time.”

260 responses to “Sadly, agriculture is forever beyond their intellectual capabilities”

  1. nescio
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:27 am [Reply]

    Take the hint, Momma.

  2. Justin
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:28 am [Reply]

    Based on panel 3, I can only assume that Herb’s wife is some sort of demon from the netherworld. I assume she’s upset because, as those of us who have analyzed Herb’s speech patterns may have already realized, Herb doesn’t actually have a soul to steal.

  3. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:29 am [Reply]

    MW: Ooooh, it’s Dawn’s lucky day! He’s both handsome and pitiable. Mary will be so pleased!

    MT: Can we please just have a week’s worth of panels of Rusty “running” and tripping, along with the flying Sassy o’ Surprise? In these grim times, we could all use some good laughs.

    JP: Coming this fall! Buxom Bea the eccentric innkeeper meets hard-drivin’, trout-lovin’ Hollywood mogul Avery! Can these two crazy kids find love in the woods while fending off backwoods pot growers and wrangling a mischievous house skunk named Conrad, who gets up to all kinds of shenanigans? Find out this fall on NBC with Out of My Bed, Conrad!

  4. Mary Worthless
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    **sigh**

    Not only does she get college credit, Dawn also gets to give a blow job.

    Ain’t “volunteering” grand!

  5. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    SS – The ‘economic downturn’, in this case, means that the Sherrif busted up their still, so they need to find alternative means of earning income until they can replace the parts and distill a new batch.

  6. Chareth Cutestory
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:37 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: We all know that Dawn’s ham-fisted attempts at interacting with people is eventually going to make Jim explain how he lost his arm. But, I swear, if she responds to his story by uttering the phrase, “Life is brutal,” one more time… I am going to become a scientist and invent a machine that lets me travel to comics multiverses, then kick her square in the solar plexus. You’ve worn it out!

  7. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:37 am [Reply]

    Sally Forth-Simple, Ted, you haven’t dug the shallow graves in the backyard for them yet.

    MW-My name’s Dawn and I love you.

    MW 2-My name’s Dawn and you’ll be my boyfriend now.

    MW 3-My name’s and my ex-boyfriend Dave used to have something big and singular too.

    Gil Thorp-That’s what you get for putting a guy onto the team who has never played football before.

    RMMD-Since you saw me at the free clinic I tell everyone I had diabetes and not something else.

  8. Juan mortyme
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    JP: I would have held off accusing Bea & Co at least until I was driving away in my SUV out of rifle range.

  9. Chareth Cutestory
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    @Chareth Cutestory (#6): If it turns out Jim lost his arm like Dr. Rocket Romano from ER, I won’t mind at all in the least if Dawn says, “Life is brutal.”

  10. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    @Mary Worthless (#4):
    **sigh**

    Dave used to give me college credit.

  11. Mibbitmaker
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:49 am [Reply]

    (BG&)SS: Two children with facial hair.

    MW: “Dave had… no, Dave didn’t have just one arm! I’M FREEEE! I’M FREEEE!!!” (all MW = FW jokes already taken…)

    H&J: “Hi, honey… IT HAPPENS TO ALL MEN AT ONE TIME OR ANOTHER, ALRIGHT?!?!”

  12. Mibbitmaker
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    MW:

    “Life is brutal.”
    “So’s a revved-up Weed Whacker, Dawn!”

  13. Mibbitmaker
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    New PCK is up!

    Part 1 of 6.

    Surrelia would go to the ends of the universe for her friends…

  14. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:54 am [Reply]

    Cow & Boy: Prehensile toes. That’s a real gift.

  15. Mary Worthless
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:54 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#10):

    Dave could give a two hand job.

  16. TheDiva
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:58 am [Reply]

    H&J: “I wanted my wife to be pretty arm candy, and now I find out she has feeling and a personality! This isn’t what I signed up for!”

    MW: So, do we have to sit through the part where Jim further shames Dawn by showing what a positive attitude he has in the face of his trials (which are so much worse than Dawn’s relationship trauma because, hello, missing arm), or is that pretty much a given? (Foolish question–it’s Mary Worth; we always have to sit through it.)

  17. teenchy
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    H&J: Never noticed this before but Herb’s hairline makes his face look similarly shaped to Jamaal’s head. Oh, and glad Herb’s coffee cup says “Herb” on it or else I’d have called him Jamaal.

  18. Cloudbuster
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:03 am [Reply]

    9CL: Fucking emasculating bitch.

    FW: Wow, he delved into the box of cliches deep enough to pull out battling “cyber hackers” and cheesy names like “Black Cloud” and “White Cloud,” but the big ole “silver lining” cliche never occurred to him (before being immediately rejected as gaggingly awful)? I pity anyone who wastes good money buying one of his comic books.

    MW: Such sparkling, witty dialog. This is why we pay professionals to write comics. Also, good lord. We have *three* comics running simultaneously now with characters missing their left arms (MW, Gil Thorp and Funky). Why do cartoonists hate left arms?

  19. Mary Worthless
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:05 am [Reply]

    @Mibbitmaker (#12):

    So’s a chainsaw in a shower.

  20. Señor Tortilla
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:05 am [Reply]

    MW 1 – “I may be missing an arm, but I’m not missing what counts!”

    MW 2 – “I went to a support group with some chick from Ohio who plans to murder her own mother.”

  21. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    MW – Dawn will hear the inspiring story of how Jim still works as a surgeon, despite having lost his arm when he accidentally sewed it up inside a patient.

    Determined not to allow his disability to hold him back, he continues to perform complex operations, with only a 25% greater fatality rate than experienced by surgeons with two working arma!

  22. Crankenstank
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    Time for Snuffy & Co. to sign up for some of that sweet, sweet fracking money.

  23. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#18):

    “Why do cartoonists hate left arms?”

    Not sure what sinister motivations lurk below the surface for many, but I think most of the leftophobes’ problems stem from not being in their right minds.

  24. Chyron HR
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    MW – “My name’s Jim. They used to call me James, but part of it got cut off.”

    FW – So is… is Superman fighting the evil Black Hat Cloud supposed to be Pete/Batiuk’s resolution to the Grounded story arc? Or did yesterday’s strip not have anything to do with the rest of this week? I mean, what the actual fuck?

    And how does Superman fight hackers anyway? Does he shoot a tiny Superman out of his fingers and into the Internet? Is the Black Cloud supposed to be a modernized update of Richard Pryor’s character from Superman III? And why did DC have to split up Power Girl and Terra when they made such a cute couple?

  25. Marc
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (Y#252): Mailboxes are designed to be tamper resistant. My company makes some of the security features for the boxes, and the USPS is very particular about who they allow to purchase the parts to install on the boxes. An ordinary screw driver is not going to be able to take apart a mailbox. At least not one that has been equipped with the tamper proof security features. We do a boatload of business with the postal service for this exact reason. To keep dipshits from breaking in and stealing back their love letters.

  26. pastordan, snark late shift
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    I’ve discovered that by irresponsibly postponing the things I need to do today, I have more time for snark here. Yay me!

    Amazing Spider-Man: If Peter can grab his ankle like that without falling off the high wire, he has a bright future as a gymnast, second only to Laurel Hardy’s career in engineering.

    Apt. 3-G: Please to note: there are only white people in New York, except for whoever’s in that Chinese laundry truck, or not.

    Snuffy Smith: Record numbers of Americans are “food insecure.” Let us now laugh at them! Ha ha ha! Oh, rural starvation is a never-ending fountain of mirth.

    9 Chickweed Lane: Kill me.

    Judge Parker: Look out now. Roseanne and Danny DeVito are going to face off in a confrontation that may result in sexytime resembling nothing so much as the pairing of Lrr and Ndnd of Omicron Persei-8. You may want to withdraw to a safe radius.

    Mark Trail: Those poachers have surprisingly delicate little hands and feet.

    Mary Worth: Dawn was looking for a one-eyed pocket monster, but she’ll settle for blond, bland, and one-armed.

    Rex Morgan, M.D.: Did they change artists or something? Seems like we’re taking a turn toward gritty social realism. That taxi driver’s going to pull a gun and massacre everyone in Jodie Foster’s whorehouse any minute now.

    Slylock Fox: Umm, what is that penguin doing to the fish? His eyes tell me I don’t want to know…

    Zippy the Pinhead: Sigh. Dave used to make Nashes in Kenosha. Then George Romney took over and phased them out.[*]

  27. tb4000
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Luann: Only in this strip. Only in this strip.

  28. David Schraub
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    Re: Barney Google & Snuffy Smith.

    The narrator can pronounce “economic” but not “the”? (with apologies to OOTS).

  29. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    Fred – The true horror of Fred Basset. The artist has been dead for years, but nobody actually took over for him. The strips just show up.

    Mark – “It’s SASS-Y! It’s SASS-Y!
    This magical fly-ing dog
    Takes off when you trip on a log!”

    (Meanwhile: “COME ON! WE’LL SNEAK UP ON HIM!! HE’LL NEVER SUSPECT A THING!!!“)

  30. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    Mary – Dave used to say his name was Jim.

    Mutts – Dave used to repeat himself.

    Josh – Jim will make Dawn forget Dave, single handed!

  31. Downpuppy
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:21 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#18): In meat world, people lose left arms because they hang them out the driver’s side window.

    In comics? I dunno. I had a picture, but somebody stole my camera.

  32. True Fable
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    If Amos is willing to take a wedgie in front of 3000 people from his intended bride moments after he proposed to her, then I trust he is prepared to take misery in the ass for the rest of his life. What a bitch.

  33. Hamlet
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#23):

    Sinister motivations, intentional? Considering the etymology of sinister.

  34. pastordan, is not aware of all internet conventions
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    @tb4000 (#27): I can’t think of a police force in the world that puts only an officer’s first name on their badges. Not even mall security.

  35. Dennis Jimenez
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:28 am [Reply]

    BG&SS – Steal an’ apply fer welfare!! Steal an’ apply fer welfare!! Gads, that’s all they wanna do….

    MW – So, Jim may have just one arm – OK, but the real question is whether he can “get up” at the crack of Dawn….

    H&J – Um, how ’bout another taste of the herb, and just don’t worry about it….

    Adios Amigos, DJ.

  36. Chaze126
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:28 am [Reply]

    RMMD – “So, Sam, if you are willing to identify yourself to me, may I ask why you’re wearing that fake glasses/nose/mustache disguise?”

    A3G – It appears that the Blue Man Group is now doing street performances in NYC, but because this is A3G, they have become the Pale Blue Man Group.

    Rhymes w/Orange – No snark here. Wanted to do a thumbs up for actually making me laugh out loud today.

    BB – I would believe Otto more if replaced the word “view” with “smell.”

    9CL – There you have it, folks. Everything you hate about this strip – economy sized. I’ve never seen such a “fuck you” to a readership since….well….Brooke’s last “fuck you, beefwits” to his readership.

    LuAnn – Toni has definitely screwed every guy in town (except Brad) and knows full well Jim the Cop is wearing ladies panties.

  37. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    Popeye: Best Popeye in years! Hooray Grumpers! Calling Bats Colon Left-Bracket! We need King Grumper in MW, Rex Morgan and a dozen other strips, stat!

    // Love is… King Grumper!

  38. Dennis Jimenez
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#30): “Jim will make Dawn forget Dave, single handed!”

    And unarmed!!

  39. Ukulele Ike
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:30 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#18): There’s also Frizzletop, who made a random and unexplained reappearance in Dick Tracy a few weeks back. It certainly is con-veeeeeee-ni-ent that all these folks managed to have their LEFT arms chopped off, leaving them able to easily swing golf clubs and write out checks and pick their noses. Assuming that, like normal persons, they are right-handed.

  40. seismic-2
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:33 am [Reply]

    MW: “Hi, my name’s Jim, and I’m the new surgeon here! I wish I could afford a real lunch like yours instead of this can and empty plate, but my malpractice insurance is a real bitch!”

  41. Marc
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:33 am [Reply]

    9CL- Those 3,000 people you just made suffer through that are waiting for you in the parking lot to issue you a monumental beatdown.

    A3G- “I’m pretty sure there’s more to life than really, really, ridiculously good looking. And I plan on finding out what that is.”

    Mark Trail- There’s that “old” adjective showing up again. Apparently Elrod is the exact opposite of McEldowney. Instead of using the most inane, vaguely related synonyms he can find, Elrod picks one word and uses it to describe everything.

    MT2- Panel one is absolutely hilarious to me. The image of disproportioned Rusty carelessly tripping on a log, sending Sassy, who looks more like a spotted rabbit than a dog, flying through the air. And last but not least, the look on the rabbit-dog’s face as she wonders what the hell just happened.

    Funky- I’m not really a comic book person, but I feel pretty safe in saying that nobody is going to buy this book. Mopey Pete will then be fired for his epic failure and will throw himself off the Empire State Building out of shame. That sounds just about dark enough for a Batiuk storyline.

    Luann- I feel like if I try to comment on the complete fucking idiocy of today’s strip, it will end up as just a bunch of obscenities and capital letters. So I’m going to attempt to refrain from commenting on how Evans has clearly never met a police officer, seen a mailbox, or doesn’t even have the vaguest idea of how the real world works.

    Archie- Grand theft auto is practically a victimless crime. Like punching someone in the dark.

  42. Marc
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth- So I’m just going to come out and ask it; who is that little man straddling Jim’s remaining arm?

  43. Dartpaw86
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    Thanks to Josh.
    -Pluggers are actually mutants isolated on an island.
    -Marmaduke is a demon from hell
    And now with Snuffy Smith I will never see these comics the same way ever again :D thanks Josh, you not only make the comics funnier, you vastly improve them.

  44. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:37 am [Reply]

    DtM – As a rather rotund individual, I admit that I have faced Mr Wilson’s “under the belly” “over the belly” conundrum. Based on today’s strip, as a fashion consultant to chubs and bears everywhere, I think “under the belly” is the way to go, Mr Wilson.

  45. Esther Blodgett
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:37 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#3): re: JP. Oh, snap! I’m totally setting my DVR!

  46. Dartpaw86
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    @Marc (#41):

    Nah, not dark enough for him. He wouldn’t let his characters die that quickly and easily, he makes them suffer through long horrible sicknesses in intense pain for month long panels making them wish they had committed suicide.

  47. TheDiva
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    9CL: Congratulations, Amos, your chosen life partner has the emotional maturity of a ten-year-old bully. I know you’ll deserve each other.

    A3G: “I mean it! He’s completely aggravating and there’s no way my sparring with him conceals a latent attraction that will spark into romance!”

    C’shaft: Kid, you have to ask yourself if this is really worth fifty cents (because that was good enough for Cranky in his day so dammit, it better be good enough for you!).

    FW: This guy was hired by DC comics? Is there a writer shortage I don’t know about?

    Luann: Luann’s learning so much, like how to manipulate men with promises of her favors! But it’s okay because she’s a sweet person bursting with inner beauty, and not an evul hor like Ann Eiffel.

    MT: Rusty’s escape attempt is going exactly as well as you might expect.

    SM: So, who’s more pathetic right now: Spider-Man or Rusty? Discuss.

  48. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    @Hamlet (#33):

    My motivation for the use of ‘sinister’ is probably best left to the imagination….

  49. Kimble
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    Who’s the depressed gumshoe in the second background of 3-G? Hopefully there will be an embarrassing at Lu Ann’s gallery while she’s skipping out. Looks like Sam Spade might have a case in his future! Gasp! That green van…it’s the robbers getting away!

  50. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:42 am [Reply]

    Scary Gary: No. How about, “That’s the second biggest voodoo doll I’ve ever seen!”?

    // But maybe Mark Buford isn’t a Get Smart fan.

  51. UncleJeff
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:47 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#3): Y’know, “Out Of My Bed, Conrad” is something I’d watch.
    Better get that sucker trademarked and off to an agent, ASAP.

  52. Lurker Bob
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    GT: I watch a lot of football, but I have absolutely what the hell is going on in the first panel of today’s Gil Thorpe. Are they squaring off to wrestle? Is this some sort of mating ritual? Is he going to introduce the team to the magic of the Riverdance?

  53. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:49 am [Reply]

    Crank: That bottle gets shoved up his ass, kid.

    FW: I hate these stupid fucking “comic book” story arcs…….oh, who the hell am I kidding. I simply hate this comic strip!

    Luann: Nah. Just her tit which was about to spear his arm…

    MT: Rusty trips over an old log……..as opposed to a new log??

    MW: “I’m horny. Wanna have sex??”

    Retail: I think Stuart and the pointy-headed boss from “Dilbert” really ought to get together.

    RMMD: “So much so, I decided to take up driving a taxi!”

  54. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    FC – Dolly, you miserable little harpie bitch, I hope for your sake, there’s an Amos (9CL variety, of course) out there whose life you can ruin.

    GT – Irish Terry seems to not know when to quit, because it appears he is attacking his teammates and then apologizing for it. Or is my attempt at a snark really what is happening? Gee, that would be embarrassing? Not for me. For the strip.

    Pibgorn – Self reference and name dropping. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. Now, can someone explain who is grabbing whom and why? I get it in the self referenced strip, but the Glibporn version? Looks like the faeries want at each other.

  55. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    @True Fable (#32):

    I trust he is prepared to take misery in the ass for the rest of his life

    Yup, you’ve got him pegged.

  56. Esther Blodgett
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    C’shaft: The idea of lawn mower polish is actually pretty funny.

    PBS: I want a guerrilla suit!

    Luann: Nobody who buys the idea of Luann writing a letter and taking it to a corner mailbox is going to simultaneously buy the idea that women can be firefighters.

  57. Alter Ego
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    love is… stalking an unsuspecting GILF.

  58. Droopy Says
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:56 am [Reply]

    @Marc (#25): So we can safely assume that the Luann mail box isn’t one of your products. Now I wonder how hard Bwad and Toni will work to destroy the box, and who will make the inevitable teehee joke about “playing post office.”

  59. Ukulele Ike
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:57 am [Reply]

    @Chaze (#54): Back home on the Auld Sod, Terry was a prominent Rugby Hooligan/Lager Lout. Punching his teammates repeatedly in the face and then vomiting all over their cleats is second nature.

  60. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:57 am [Reply]

    MW-My name’s Dawn. I have an easily addictive personality and when my boyfriend I get very depressed almost suicidal.

    MW 2-My name’s Dawn and my catchphrase is ‘Life is brutal’. Seeing as how you have only one arm I don’t need to tell you that.

  61. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:58 am [Reply]

    A3G – Will you think Greg is so attractive when he loses his left arm, Margo? I only bring it up because there’s a lot of that going around these days.

  62. The Ridger
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:58 am [Reply]

    Luann: You have no idea how much I (a) hate that I looked at today’s strip and (b) hope that Jim the Cop has gone to call the FBI.

  63. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:59 am [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#59): Thus the “hurling” reference, right?

  64. AhClem
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    MT

    As Rusty runs from the poachers he carelessly trips over an old log.

    How else would you trip over a log? Gracefully? Attentively? Thoughtfully?

  65. Marc
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:02 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#58): I hope that didn’t come off like an infomercial. It’s just extra annoying to me, knowing how they secure the boxes and what they use, that Evans who has clearly never actually looked at a mailbox, thinks it can be disassembled and put back together in 10 minutes with a regular screwdriver.

  66. Voshkod
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    I think Josh is on to something with his analysis of Snuffy Smith. Follow me here, people. In Snuffy Smith, we’re seeing the end of modern civilization. It’s right there in the title! The modern world has been Snuffed out. But that’s not all.

    A new civilization rises on the ashes of the old. They don’t have much – they’re cave men, really – but they remember a few relics. Like golf and the Bible. Thus, B.C. is born.

    But man cannot stay still, civilization must evolve. A monarchical serfdom arises, the kingdom of Id. A clever name, to be sure, hiding two clues. Freud’s id, the base, emotional part of the brain, known for low humor and bad art. The Latin id, short form of idem, meaning ‘the same.’ That’s right – the Wizard of Id is the same world as B.C. and Snuffy Smith. We’re through the looking-glass here now, people.

    The people of Id become imperialists, as all late-stage monarchies do, and conquer a desert land of hostile natives and extremely poor art. And thus we have Crock.

    Now, I admit, the evolution becomes hazy. Does Crock lead us to a post-imperialist world, where first world problems abound, such as sandwich crises (Blondie), relationship crises (Luann), or hairless gnome crises (Ziggy)? Does it lead to an idealized 1950s (Archie or Red and Rover)? Or perhaps a hellscape of talking animals (Pearls Before Swine, My Cage, or the Orwellian depths of Slylock Fox)? More research is needed, and I’ve applied for a grant.

    But the end of the theory is clear. The nuclear family goes nuclear, The Family Circus ends civilization as we know it, and once again, Snuffy and his tongue-wagging friends are foraging for survival in a world spiraling backward to the stone age.

  67. Ukulele Ike
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:05 am [Reply]

    @Chaze (#63): Yep. As the Irish ballad has it,

    “At the great hurling match between Cork and Tipperary
    (‘Twas played in the park on the banks of the Lee)
    Our own darling lads were afraid of being beaten
    So they sent for bold Terry to Ballinagree
    He hurled the ball right and left in their faces
    And showed the Tipperary men action and skill
    If they touched on his lines he would certainly brain them
    And the papers were full of the praise of Terry Quill

    (Chorus):
    For ramblin’, for rovin’, for football’ or courtin’
    For drinkin’ black porter as fast as you’d fill
    In all your days rovin’ you’ll find none so jovial
    As our Muskerry sportsman, the bould Terry Quill”

  68. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:05 am [Reply]

    Popeye – I hope this incident of clubbing a bratty kid on the head with a club catches on and makes it way into Family Circus, Frazz and Curtis. Anticipated targets? Any of the melonheads, although Dolly would be an odds on favorite, Caulfield (cringe) and Barry. Have away at it, Grump!

  69. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:06 am [Reply]

    Zippy: I not absolutely certain of this, but I think the 1957 Nash Metro (one of the Series III models) should have a rather snazzy large chrome hood ornament, depicting a female figure on a wing. The hood ornament went away for the Series IV, starting in 1959.

    This could actually be a 59-62 model.

    // Unusual for Griffith to make an error like that, though, and I am no expert.

  70. The Ghost of Jarrod
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:07 am [Reply]

    MW – Say what you will about the blandness of Jim, but he’s a survivor. He obviously escaped from the Funkyverse.

    Luann – That is not how police work.

    S4th – Ted, you have medium awareness. You know having your sister-in-law move in creates more wacky hijinx. Add in your mother-in-law, and it’s a full-blown sitcom!

  71. Horace Broon
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:09 am [Reply]

    GT: “So it turns out having a kicker with no idea how the game works was a bad idea. This is why other people are supposed to do my job for me, for free!”

    RMMD: Rex doesn’t remember Sammy at all, but he knows it’s unlikely he actually saved someone’s life.

  72. Nekrotzar
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:11 am [Reply]

    Obviously the economic downturn is causing a steep decline in revenue at Snuffy’s and Lukey’s wives’ high-end phone sex business.

  73. pugfuggly
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    BB&SS Everyone knows that the only recession-proof activity in Hootin’ Holler is moonshinin’. Give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day, teach a man to ‘shine, and he’ll live off the misery of others’ addictions for years!

    MW Oh great, a one-armed man with a sunny disposition. This situation harbours the kind of deep moral that Mary can yak on about for WEEKS.

    H&J Meanwhile, Herb’s wife is thinking “There’s that smile again…he must be day-dreaming about Jamaal again…”

  74. bbofun
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    MW- “*sigh*-Dave used to be called Jim.”

    (alt)-”*sigh* Dave used to have a right arm.”

    FW- So, I just checked (and, yes, I need a life)- back a couple of week ago, when this comic-book arc started, the publishing company mopey (or whatever his name is0 worked for was called “Metropolis Comics.” Now, that’s fine- using a fake name, that is nevertheless obviously suppose to be DC, is pretty standard. But then they actually state that he’s writing SUPERMAN, a real character! Then they reference an actual arc in the Superman series! But now, they have the story he’s writing have NOTHING TO DO WITH that arc in the comics! And, what’s worse, it’s a completely STUPID idea for a story (what in heaven’s name is the “good cloud?” Is there an evil cloud of virtual information? Can people’s iTunes collections be classified by morality?) (Okay, yeah, maybe…)! And it’s not exactly something Superman’s power-set comes in handy for. And he’s going to resolve it with a cliche? How did he even get this job?

    What I’m trying to say is, Batiuk’s a hack.

  75. sally
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#40):

    MT: “But at least my tray has a grown-up plastic cup! Are you drinking MILK out of a CARTON? What are you, nine?”

  76. Illustrator Steve
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    MT – As Rusty trips over a BIG OLD LOG impaling himself on a BIG OLD BROKEN TREE LIMB, Sassy inflates herself to three times her size and makes a LEAP-O-FREEDOM freeing herself from the idiot child and makes her way escape to SOMEWHERE IN THE SOUTHERN PART OF THE STATE. Meanwhile, the SHEEP KILLERS run off in the opposite direction to CHECK THEIR AREA while yelling about how they can’t let him get away.
    Yes, all just typical daily occurrences for Lost Forest, LOCATED NOT TO FAR FROM A NEAR BY CITY at the base of BIGHORN MOUNTAIN.

  77. teenchy
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#66): Have you ever watched the cartoon Adventure Time? If so, you may be on to something.

    Re FW: Forgive my Pluggerness but is “cyber hacker” redundant?

  78. sally
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:15 am [Reply]

    @AhClem (#64):

    This being Rusty, “stupidly.”

  79. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    MT – When has so little given so much to so many? Mark Trail is the gift that keeps on giving to mudges everywhere. Almost makes you think they do it on purpose. There’s so much to mock.

    Rusty carrying a dog that can run faster than he. Rusty tripping over a log the size of a downed sequoia. The poachers apparently running in a 90 degree angle away from Rusty. What appears to be a 9 Mile nuclear reactor in the background behind the poachers, or else the world’s biggest tree. On and on. It IS being done on purpose, right? Sort of a ironic Slylock Fox “spot the errors” deal, right?

  80. pugfuggly
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    @AhClem (#64):

    In Rusty’s case, ‘stupidly’ or ‘hideously’ could be applied, I suppose.

  81. Hart of Johnny
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:17 am [Reply]

    @The Ghost of Jarrod (#70): “Hi, my name is Jim….Jim Winkerbean.”

  82. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:18 am [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#35): The second clause of your Mary Worth comment produced an audible response. Way to turn a phrase, man!

    @Ukulele Ike (#67): I wish I knew the tune. Good one! (Speaking of ukuleles, I only just discovered Tiny Tim’s “Chameleon” album. I may not download the whole thing right away, but I’m looking at “My Way” with considerable interest. And good ghod, Rhino has the ‘God Bless Tiny Tim Sessions” — 223 minutes of TT.)

  83. Old School Allie Cat
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    H(and)&J(ob) – Herb’s wife (Yolanda?) appears to have Graves Disease. If she were to get on the appropriate meds, I suspect her mood would improve.

    I’m not a doctor, but I read Rex Morgan, MD – so, eh – close enough.

  84. sally
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#66):

    When you get your grant, I’ll be a peer reviewer for your paper.

  85. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    A&J: d’awwwwwwww.

    Lio: *golf clap*

    PBS: ayup. saw that one coming from two panels away.

    SBp: eeeeeeeeeQLUNK!

    Zits: ewwww.

    yJUMBLE: I was thinking it was “LOVE” match. my bad.

    Mutts: you’re better than this.

    6Cx: KLANG!!!!

    Retail: just summed up my current job sitch.

  86. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#5): SS – The ‘economic downturn’, in this case, means that the Sherrif busted up their still, so they need to find alternative means of earning income until they can replace the parts and distill a new batch.

    This would be a nice interpretation, but moonshining is but a distant memory in Hootin’ Holler. It’s been more than ten years since a still or even a jug marked XXX has been shown here. I don’t know whether it was Fred Lasswell or John Rose who was responsible, but Snuffy very publicly swore off moonshining a decade or more ago. I remember seeing stories about it in the regular “news” section of the newspapers at the time. The new Puritanism, don’t want to give kids bad ideas.

    // Of course, stealing chickens is ok.

  87. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    Love Is . . . .GMILF wincest.

  88. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#71):

    It could have been worse. The kicker could have tried to throw a pass:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGC-uGKivvE

    Bonus points for knowing what that link had to be just from the intro.

  89. bbofun
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:22 am [Reply]

    Oh, and as for Gil Thorp- “Kicks off- and tees off!” So, he started playing golf? He started annoying people? Y’know, if you’re going to ignore the rule of “show, don’t tell,” YOU STILL HAVE TO TELL!

    Actually, if it is that he started going after the other team (rather that stay back, the way his teammate told him to the other day), because that’s what you do in “rugby and hurling’, I have to say I called it a week ago. (No idea exactly when, and I wouldn’t know how to link to it anyway- but I’m calling credit for it anyway!)

  90. bkbaroo
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:23 am [Reply]

    Jim (thinking): “How come I get the one-armed gig on Mary Worth? I tried out for Gil Thorp! Who do I have to screw to get away from this emotional train-wreck?” (To Dawn): “Nice to meet you, Dawn. Can you cut up my lunch for me? I lost my arm swimming the 100 yards shore from the Costa Concordia. Those long 100 yards…” (thinking some more): “Shoot me.”

  91. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#86):

    Pshaw! Just a PR ploy designed to put a positive spin on the fact that ol’ Snuff switched to making meth.

  92. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:28 am [Reply]

    Snuffy Smith-”Before the economic downturn”? I thought they were always living in an economic downturn.

  93. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:28 am [Reply]

    @pastordan, snark late shift (#26): Dave used to make Nashes in Kenosha. Then George Romney took over and phased them out.

    Hence, his son’s hilarious anecdote about closing factories, and the marching band that only knew one song, “On, Wisconsin!” [*]

  94. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:30 am [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#30): Jim will make Dawn forget Dave, single handed!

    Ouch!

  95. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:30 am [Reply]

    Love Is-Making sure you get a big ol’ chunk of cash from Granny.

  96. Pyzimber
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:31 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#18): A guy in Crankshaft was missing an arm as well, as I recall.

  97. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:31 am [Reply]

    Frazz – Yeah, when we were kids, the first thing we did when we got our tests back was run to the custodian and show him. Didn’t trust our teachers or our parents, just some Jim Jones/Pied Piper character on the periphery of our lives. Yeah, that’s what we did.

  98. Pyzimber
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:31 am [Reply]

    MW: I’m sure this relationship with Jim and Dawn will get off to a great start, until the moment when Dawn asks Jim if she “could lend him a hand with the groceries.” Then it’s doomed.

  99. Ian Beste
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:32 am [Reply]

    MW. “My name’s Jim, but you can call me Lefty.”

    “Oh, really, why?”

    “Oh, look, my pager’s going off! Well, back to Pediatrics!”

  100. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    @Pyzimber (#96): There could be a one armed kid coming up in Wankshaft if that lawnmower accident goes off as planned.

  101. Ukulele Ike
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#82): It’s a GREAT tune. It’s on the Clancy Bros. second album.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Come_Fill_Your_Glass_with_Us

  102. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:40 am [Reply]

    ASM – That’s quite a high tech video device JJJ is sporting in his office. Is that the newest gargantuan Samsung smartphone? I hear the iPhone 6 will have a 27″ screen. Progress!

  103. Peanut Gallery
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:41 am [Reply]

    love is… hiding behind the chair until Grandma can knit you some damn clothes.

  104. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:46 am [Reply]

  105. Doctor Handsome
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:46 am [Reply]

    Ugh. I shudder to think what girls with “personality” look like in Herb’s world.

  106. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:47 am [Reply]

    Crankshaft-And after you polish my mower I’ve got something else that you can polish.

    FC-Someone should explain the rules of a game to you.

  107. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:47 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#88): *collects bonus points*

  108. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    @pastordan, snark late shift (#26):

    I’ve discovered that by irresponsibly postponing the things I need to do today, I have more time for snark here. Yay me!

    It’s about time you got your priorities in order.

    @AhClem (#64): I’ll cast a vote for “hilariously.”

  109. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:50 am [Reply]

    MW-Dawn, you better check him over and make sure he isn’t missing anything else.

  110. Voshkod
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    Tomorrow’s Mary Worth:

    Dawn: “So, if you don’t mind me asking, how did you lose your left arm?”

    Jim: “No, I don’t mind, you see, there was an infection. It had to be amputated and . . . wait, did you say left arm? Oh, my God!”

    Next three months of Mary Worth: Doctor Jeff Corey’s malpractice insurance woes.

  111. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    @Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy (#53): MT: Rusty trips over an old log……..as opposed to a new log??

    My objection to this is not the “old” log. Why not an old log? My objection is the adverb “carelessly”. You may carelessly trip over a stool, for instance, if you are wandering around your house reading a newspaper while drinking a cup of coffee. You may carelessly step into an open manhole on the street if you are texting. “Carelessly” implies some blame to the victim. It suggests you were doing one thing when you should have been paying attention to another.

    If you are fleeing from villains, you are not “careless”. You take chances because you are running as fast as you can. You may accidentally, or unfortunately, or, even tragically, trip over a log, old or new, but it is not the result of carelessness. It is the result of deliberately taking a gamble, and losing. “Oh, Sergeant! You stepped on a land mine. How careless of you!”

    // I’ve often wondered, is Jack Elrod’s first language English? He seem utterly tone deaf. I quit smoking twenty years ago, but reading this makes me want to go and get some of that chewing gum that people chew when they are trying to quit smoking. Maybe it will calm me down.

  112. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    MW-My name’s Dawn. I dress like I’m an elderly meddling woman.

  113. Dood
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    Barney Google and Snuffy Smith: Elviney and Loweezy are seeing their men off on yet another critical fishing excursion in the Hootin’ Holler Spartan fashion by warning them to return either with, or on, their hooks.

  114. seismic-2
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    MW: Let’s just jump ahead to the end of this arc, when Dawn falls in love with Jim. Here’s how it will happen:
    Dawn: “Jim, I don’t want to get too personal or bring up painful memories, but how did you lose your arm?”
    Jim: “This is truly stupid – I lost it when engaging in cosplay, of all things! A bunch of us fans were staging a re-enactment of a swordfight from Game of Thrones, and I accidentally suffered a real injury that severed an artery! Have you ever seen that show? Even after the accident, I still love it!”

  115. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:00 am [Reply]

    @AhClem (#64): I see you addressed part of my rant at #111. Quite right

  116. Dood
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: “My name’s Jim. I like to go through the cafeteria line and not get anything.”

  117. pastordan, is not aware of all internet conventions
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:02 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#108): I’m lecturing today on the subject of how you have to grieve endings before there can be new beginnings.[*] I will be grieving the ending of my job and starting a new beginning on the bread lines if I don’t get the damn thing written.

    Yes, I am Snuffy Smith.

  118. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:04 am [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#82): “Tiny Tim” would be a great name for a Dickens character!

  119. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:10 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#111): Reading Mark Trail IS much like reading something written by someone of another tongue. Years ago, when I bought Saabs and Volvos, some of the most hilarious malaprops I ever read were in the owner’s manual.

    Based on his tortured signature (if it can be called that) and the crazed fonts and font sizes, my best guess is that Jack Elrod is a Klingon.

  120. Doctor Handsome
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:17 am [Reply]

    Yes, fishing is definitely less enjoyable when it’s just a way to get you out of the house so your wife can turn tricks for rent money.

  121. Dennis Jimenez
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:18 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#118): Uriah Heap would make a good name for an American-made automobile….

  122. Lupin The 3.1415926th
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:19 am [Reply]

    *Sung by Wilbur Weston*

    Seems like only yesterday
    I heard my little girl say:
    I broke up with a boy, his name was Dave.
    “Life is brutal”, she said, with a dismissive wave.
    Almost drowned, then got saved.
    I met a boy, his name was Jim.
    I asked if I could sit by him.
    Gotta say, he looks kinda dim.
    The bland men in my little girl’s life.
    The bland men in my little girl’s life.

  123. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:20 am [Reply]

    @pastordan, is not aware of all internet conventions (#117): I’m lecturing today on the subject of how you have to grieve endings before there can be new beginnings.

    I thought you were teaching some kind of Bible as literature course? So like, Job has to lose all his old wives and children and cattle, and get a nasty case of painful boils, before he can get new wives and children and cattle.

    Feel free to use that. Grab the old thesaurus, Greenville Kleiser’s Useful Phrases, cut ‘n paste a bit. Remember to talk slowly. You’re there!

    // You’re welcome. Us ex-pastors have to stick together.

  124. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:21 am [Reply]

    @Chaze (#119): Based on his tortured signature (if it can be called that) and the crazed fonts and font sizes, my best guess is that Jack Elrod is a Klingon.

    I was thinking Vogon, but I’d have to see some of his verse to be sure.

  125. LP2004
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:22 am [Reply]

    @AhClem (#64): This is Rusty we’re talking about, so I’ll go with ‘naturally’.

  126. Doctor Handsome
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:24 am [Reply]

    Wow, Jim’s drinking an undisclosed beverage in a completely blank white can. Out-generic THAT, Herb & Jamaal!

  127. Mibbitmaker
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#121): And the advertising could say that such a car would make for Easy Livin’ (using the song in the commercial, of course).

  128. Uncle Lumpy
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    So Jim is Mary Worth‘s idea of a “pin-up.” Well, it could be worse.

  129. Ian Beste
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:42 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#111): Good opinionation, that.

  130. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:43 am [Reply]

    MW – Poor Jim, along with missing his left arm, his left eyebrow seems to run right down the ridge of his nose. Well, at least he still has both his eyebrows. The doctor at the table behind him is missing his left eyebrow altogether.

  131. bats :[
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:53 am [Reply]

    @Chaze (#130): hey, they’re not missing — they’re donated! Santa Royale General has the highest organ donation rate in the country!
    I’m thinking that this is the populace’s attempt to escape the meddling of Mary by donating anything until they die from a loss of something vital, but I might be wrong.

    (And I do love the new white version of flying Sassy…the old copy in my cut-and-paste stash was getting kind of old and faded, sort of tan. Wait, what?)

  132. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    MW-My name’s Jim. I’m so bland that I deliberately cut off my arm just so I could appear interesting.

  133. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:57 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#131): Are you suggesting that Santa Royale is a far-less-compelling version of the world of Never Let Me Go? That would explain a lot, actually.

  134. bats :[
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:57 am [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#104): yeah, I think that was in my “cut-and-paste” period, before I found PhotoShop…

  135. Doctor Handsome
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:03 pm [Reply]

    She’s flashing the kind of dirty look that says, “What the hell? Does Herb have rickets?”

  136. Dennis Jimenez
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:05 pm [Reply]

    @Mibbitmaker (#127): I can’t decide if that’s demonic, or wizardry….

  137. Sequitur
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#132): Oops. Are we about to embark on a Mary Worth version of 127 Hours?

  138. Gomez
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:11 pm [Reply]

    GT – That strange font looks like he’s saying “Sorry Coach. Too much hurling and pussy, I guess.”

  139. Drew Funk
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:11 pm [Reply]

    9/14/2014′s Judge Parker:

    Rich new friend: Do you like marijuana, Sam?
    Sam: Of course! I own a small plantation up in Trout Country that produces the smoothest high you’ll ever get.

  140. Dale
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:15 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#111):

    MT – I had the same problem with “carelessly”.

    The simple-minded language is a mystery.
    Who / whom / WHAT is the target audience – grade school kids? If so, teach them better about how the law is supposed to and sometimes does work.

    Oh yeah. If you’re going out, get me some of that vodka drunk by people who are trying to cut down on beer.

  141. sporknpork
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:16 pm [Reply]

    Not only do background people in the Herb and Jamaal universe walk around in perpetual shadow, but also the thought bubbles are tangible objects complete with shadows. (Evidence: last panel.)

  142. pastordan, is not aware of all internet conventions
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:16 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#123): Close. Not Job but Jeremiah. Before Israel can come home from exile, it has to admit how completely and utterly its pooch is screwed.

    I’m so cheery, I think I have a bright future ahead of me ghost-writing for Tom Batiuk.

  143. greghousesgf
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    Love is…thanking god grandma’s not naked.

  144. tubbytoast
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#3): Bourbon Babe, this is for you -

    http://www.tumblr.com/blog/snowglobegirl

    I can’t get enough flying Sassy either!

  145. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:27 pm [Reply]

    @tubbytoast (#144): Access denied!

    Life is brutal.

    (And: **sigh** I used to deny Dave access.)

  146. odinthor
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    #52. LB.

    Are they squaring off to wrestle? Is this some sort of mating ritual? Is he going to introduce the team to the magic of the Riverdance?

    These are different?

    H&J. — No, not at all. They say that you’re superficial for many, many other reasons.

    Luann. — So firefighters are deceptive and blithely abuse their authority, police are stupid and wear nametags with only a first name on their uniforms as if they were food service workers, and . . . let’s see, oh yes—and women smugly use their gender to intimidate men. All that’s missing to qualify this for the Ethics Hall of Fame is for Toni to whisper to Jim, “Why not let’s meet at the doughnut shop, handsome [wink, wink]?”

    PMP. — Do it my way and simply remove the brakes!

  147. bats :[
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:39 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#7): You know, we give Rex a lot of grief.

  148. Illustrator Steve
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:40 pm [Reply]

    MT – Questions to ponder…

    When two SHEEP KILLERS run rampant through the forest while shouting does anyone hear them?

    When a mutant kid trips over a BIG OLD LOG and falls flat on his face does anyone give a rats patooty?

    Whenever someone sees a little spotted dog flying through the forest they should:
    A. Report it immediately to the local forest service officials.
    B. Ignore it, forget it and never speak of it to anyone.
    C. Call Fox News.
    D. SHOOT the devilish thing.
    E. All of the above

  149. Lorne
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:44 pm [Reply]

    How that would actually play out:

    DAWN: “Is this seat taken?”

    JIM: “Now it is… By YOU! Help yourself!”

    DAWN: “… Uh, never mind.”

  150. tubbytoast
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:46 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#145): Oh Crap! Lack of photo-posting skills here, sorry. I’ll work on it.

  151. Marc
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:47 pm [Reply]

    Luann- “Hey Officer Koharski. Say, I smell bacon. Does anyone else smell bacon”
    “Yeah, I definitely smell a pork product of some type.”

  152. Shrug, Speaker to Spam
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:52 pm [Reply]

    @True Fable (#32):

    9CL: I can just visualize the fun ceremony. “. . . do you, Edda, take this schmiel, to have and to hold, and to have handsex with, to give wedgies to, slip whoopy cushions under, shortsheet the bed and draw mustaches on him when he is sleeping, to put shaving cream in his underwear and fake rubber spiders in his shoes, so long as ye both shall live, if he doesn’t kill you first?”

  153. Snarkotix Addict
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:56 pm [Reply]

    Luann – I can imagine this bunch of losers getting into the mail and not only finding Luann’s letter to Quill, but finding letters of Tiffany and Ann Eiffel. Of course, they’ll open them and laugh and ridicule them, because they’re EVIL. And deserve no privacy and should be victims of mail tampering.

  154. tubbytoast
    September 13th, 2012 at 12:59 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#145):Oh, Sassy, life IS brutal, but you’re so cute -
    http://pinterest.com/pin/69946600433780639/

  155. Mary Worthless
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:00 pm [Reply]

    Man, I would give my left nut to be a character in a comic strip.

  156. bunivasal
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:04 pm [Reply]

    Herb’s wife has all the things men look for in a mate: she’s tall, busty, pompadoured, and also she has the ability to change the color of her skin at will!

  157. HAMMY THE SQUIRREL!
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:05 pm [Reply]

    @Mary Worthless (#155):

    OOOH!!!! CAN I HAVE IT????

    if there is a left nut and right nut the left nut is usually smaller but tastier

  158. Cheeky
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:07 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#3):

    Bea is the best thing to happen to the JP-verse in a long time… maybe there’s a subliminal laugh-track embedded in the art?

    Oh, and Conrad should definitely have voice-overs in the new fall show! :)

  159. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:07 pm [Reply]

    MW: If you look at Jim’s tray you see an empty glass, an empty plate, and no utensils. Obviously he’s too smart to actually eat the food in the hospital cafeteria and only comes here to pick up chicks.

    WofI: The king obviously should have heeded the words Hermann something-or-other said about guns versus butter.

    C-Shaft: Crankshaft wants to see you polish the lawnmower nice and slow, kid.

    Agnes: o_O

    Popeye: If, say, Eli Roth put a subterranean monster clubbing a baby in the head in one of his movies, that would be the end of him. Somehow it’s okay in Popeye, though.

    JP: “You may have won this round, little man, but you haven’t heard the last of femme fatale Peggy Hill.”

    RMMD: Now you’ve done it, Sammy. For the next three hours Rex is going to be in a fetal position, muttering “free clinic… poor people… no money.”

    H&L: The unidentifiable green mush is a Mary Worth staple, but I think even she might stop short of serving it in a dog dish.

    GT: Gil has no idea what hurling is, and assumes that Terry has been vomiting nonstop.

    6C: Lot of old school “Battlestar Galactica” fans out there.

    Shoe: Are you sure that “boink” is the sound effect you want to go with? Because that’s something that Mr. October did to celebrate after a winning game.

    DtM: Dennis is watching Mr. Wilson get dressed. Things have taken a very wrong turn.

    S4th: If there’s a better illustration of the phrase cri de Coeur, I don’t know of it.

    A3G: “… because I could throw a dead cat and hit someone who looks exactly like him.”

  160. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:13 pm [Reply]

    @tubbytoast (#154): Love that shot! And Air Sassy—isn’t that the movie in which the tragically stupid puppy fails at saving the day for the underdog pancake-eating team?

  161. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:14 pm [Reply]

    @Lorne (#149):
    “May I have that seat?”
    “Yes, IF… you can answer me these questions three. Question the first…”
    “Nevermind.”

  162. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    MW-Jim, I must compliment you on the good job you did tucking up that sleeve. Do you tuck up anything else as well?

  163. Señor Tortilla
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:18 pm [Reply]

    MT – The flying Sassy!

    Luann – “Now, move it, you three–I’m a stripper for a local nightclub, and I’m late.”

  164. rumpled tulip
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    So, I’m relatively new to 9CL, but seriously….what. the. fuck. Please tell me Cello Guy will haul off and backhand Ballerina Bitch in tomorrow’s strip.

  165. Sequitur
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#160): Not to be confused with Sassy Air: The Dog Who Farted!

    It’s the one superpower of the flying pooch.

  166. commodorejohn
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:21 pm [Reply]

    @pastordan, snark late shift (#26): Amen, brother!

    Chickens? I thought corn likker was Hootin’ Holler’s chief export. Guess I should’ve paid more attention in Social Studies…

    Agnes – Doesn’t Agnes’s grandma know that frog taxidermy is a time-honored, horrifying tradition? (Bonus deeply unsettling taxidermy link: Compubeaver.)

    A&J – Aww. This whole storyline kicks the Foobocalypse’s ass in so many ways…

    Archie – “It’s better to apologize after than to get turned down before.” And that’s the story of how Veronica got pregnant and Reggie went to prison.

    Crock – “I can’t even see the moon craters.” They’re visible to the naked eye. Take the cap off, stupid.

    DT – I call bullshit! Every restaurant employee I have ever met has said that after seeing the back room of their place of employment they never want to eat there again!

    FW – Oh, right, that’s gonna be a real good storyline that comes out of this. (“The ‘good cloud’ in cyberspace.” Because, you know, anything that’s on the Internet exists in a sort of Gnostic ethereal data-heaven made of fluffy clouds of bits and synthesized harps, where the corruptions of this mortal world may not prevail against it. OH WAIT, THAT’S NOT HOW IT WORKS AT ALL.)

    JP – Bea tries to be a good neighbor, but dammit, Bubba’s pot field has gotten her into one scrape too many!

    Luann – Oh, this is a fucking good precedent. I just can’t wait to see what fun, fun storylines come out of Luann learning that power and sex can both be abused for personal gain at the cost of integrity! Wait, who am I kidding, these people never had any integrity.

    MT – Wait, how do you trip over a log when you’re levitating? Oh, who cares, FLYING SASSY!

    MW – I’ll go get my airsick bag.

    Momma – Congress doesn’t want to spend time with Momma, either. Considering the value of the seniors demographic, this says a hell of a lot.

    PBS – You have to admit, it’d make war way more funny.

    Phantom – “Look, seriously, I just wanted directions to the zebra h-ERARGH!”

    Popeye – Best. Popeye. EVER.

    SM – Hey, with Spider-Man inexplicably caught up in something that’s halfway like action, somebody has to sit around watching TV!

  167. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:23 pm [Reply]

    Luann – If Toni is such a world-class hottie and expert on relationships, then what the hell is she doing running around with piggyface?

  168. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:24 pm [Reply]

    @Drew Funk (#139): Hee hee. Funny and true.

  169. The Ridger
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:24 pm [Reply]

    @rumpled tulip (#164): Unfortunately, this tendency to play little pranks is widely considered within the Chickweed-verse as one of Edda’s endearing qualities.

  170. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    MW-Dawn, you can’t sit in the chair. That is reserved for Jim’s imaginary friend. You may however sit on his face.

  171. bats :[
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:32 pm [Reply]

    @greghousesgf (#143): but if she were, there’d be two dots on her knees.

  172. Dood
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:39 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worth: “Is this seat taken?” “Yes, it’s reserved for Mr. Eastwood’s noon lecture.”

  173. Shrug, Speaker to Spam
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:44 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#123):

    “Us ex-pastors have to stick together.”

    A little 3-in-1 oil would probably free you up.

    /// (Extra points for implicite Trinity joke?)

  174. Irrischano
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:44 pm [Reply]

    Judging by the third panel, I believe Herb’s wife is a part-time Jawa.

  175. terrapin
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:45 pm [Reply]

    JP: Third panel…”This is my angry, pouty face. Some men find it sexy. Do you find it sexy, Avery? Well, DO YOU?”

    MW: “Hi, Jim. Say, I heard a good joke. Where do one-armed doctors work? Give up? IHOP! Ha ha…wait…that isn’t right.”

  176. tallyHO
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:50 pm [Reply]

    @David Schraub (#28):

    The Two Dollar Word vs. the Two Penny Word.

    The way I see it, the Narrator is HillFolk, too. For some reason it is always funny to have a person who normally speaks in dumbed down speech throw out a word which you would not expect him to be able to know, say or pronounce.

    That said, I didn’t even notice there was narration when I read it earlier. That adds a heapin’ heppin’ o’ pertinent contextual-malizin’!

    //@tallyHO (yestermaday #244): <a pivot off of that same strip

    If I had actually read the narration boxes….yeesh. I can’ t imagine I would have bothered pivoting off of it at all.

  177. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:52 pm [Reply]

    MW-Wait. I said that wrong. The seat is taken.

  178. Illustrator Steve
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:53 pm [Reply]

    @tubbytoast (#154): “Oh, Sassy, life IS brutal..”

    That was back in 2010 when Rusty still wore his old Webelos Scout shirt and neckerchief. Now, as a rebellious 13 year old sufering from ‘father-gone-fishing’ abandonment syndrome, he loots fashionably decorated abandoned cabins used as SHEEP KILLER hideouts. Worse yet, he disobeys the Scout oath, motto and laws by looting sacred Native American Indian burial grounds while looking for ancient arrowheads to sell on e-bay. WHAT has happened to todays youth!? (Fortunatly,Rusty is NOT your typical ‘today’s youth’!)

  179. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 1:57 pm [Reply]

    RMMD-In today’s comic we switched Taxi Cab Driver Sam’s condition from hepatitis to diabetes. Let’s see if he notices.

  180. Shrug, Speaker to Spam
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:00 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Speaker to Spam (#173):

    . . .but points lost for the spelling mishap…

  181. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:29 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Speaker to Spam (#180): For sticky theological problems like the 1 in 3 (or 3 in 1, points granted) Trinity issue, I always use Marvel Mystery Oil. For sticky, stuck-up, or stopped-up clergymen, a teaspoon of Pastor oil before bedtime works wonders!

  182. Ian Beste
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:33 pm [Reply]

    @rumpled tulip (#164): Nope. He’s a sub, she’s a dom and the wedding night will see dog collars and spike-heeled boots.

  183. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:38 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#178): You know, the sheep killers and Rusty aren’t so far apart, when you think about it. They poach game to sell on the illegal trophy and traditional Chinese medicine markets; he loots archaeological sites. They should work together! With his knowledge of the Lost Forest, and their technology (airplane, truck, guns) they should do great things. These guys could be the father figures Rusty always needed. They might even go fishing with him!

  184. Peanut Gallery
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    RMMD – I liked seismic-2′s answer from yesterthread better.

  185. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:47 pm [Reply]

    @David Schraub (#28):re: BG&SS “The narrator can pronounce “economic” but not “the”?”

    And, how precisely is the pronunciation of th’ different from the?

  186. sally
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:48 pm [Reply]

    @Marc (#42):

    And thank god you did. Inquiring minds want to know!

  187. Ned Ryerson
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:52 pm [Reply]

    Previous appearance of Flying Sassy!!

  188. Peanut Gallery
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:55 pm [Reply]

    MW – It’s even better than that, Josh. Not only is it her first day at the hospital, she hasn’t actually done any volunteer work yet; she’s only been to the orientation! Such a deal!

  189. tallyHO
    September 13th, 2012 at 2:59 pm [Reply]

    @Ned Ryerson (#187):

    That’s all the evidence I need.

    Now any court in the world would agree that sometimes he draws the comic strip using a ball point pen on typing paper!

  190. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:02 pm [Reply]

    RMMD-”You diagnosed me with diabetes. Remember? It scared the daylights and the diabetes out of me.”

  191. debussy fields
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:06 pm [Reply]

    MW– Dawn. Look around. You’re the only one in the room who isn’t an amputee. That woman in green. The guy in the suit. Everyone else in the background. This is some twisted version of The Twilight Zone or something. Jim looks nice, but run! Run!

  192. tallyHO
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:06 pm [Reply]

    RE:visiting Today’s BG & Snuffy Smith Show.

    After reading through the comments here and re-reading what Josh wrote, I’m kind of bummed.

    A Good Enough strip could have been made without adding the Economic Downturn angle. As I wrote some time back, the artist is making money off of those sad sack strips. So (ka-CHING!) they come across as disingenious to a degree. And, there are much better ways to comment on a bad economic situation. One way includes…oh I don’t know…just making something FUNNY!

    That’s why that strip bums me out. I guess I was tired and didn’t bother with reading that first Narration Box. That made all the difference. Sometimes when someone tells you do something you like doing, it becomes a chore instead of a delight.

    I don’t know. Adding an Economy angle just seems like the wrong frosting for a so-so cake.

  193. Erich Clapton
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:08 pm [Reply]

  194. odinthor
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#166):

    Archie – “It’s better to apologize after than to get turned down before.” And that’s the story of how Veronica got pregnant and Reggie went to prison.

    Throughout world history, this, as it happens, has also been the guiding philosophy under which candidates run for office!

  195. Peanut Gallery
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:11 pm [Reply]

    @teenchy (#77):

    Forgive my Pluggerness but is “cyber hacker” redundant?

    Everyone needs a TV game with it.

  196. tallyHO
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:12 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#192):

    “As I wrote some time back, the artist is making money off of those sad sack strips. So (ka-CHING!) they come across as disingenious to a degree.”

    And, Hi & Lois is the worst.

    Seriously, start from scratch if you want to go the Depression-Era humor route.
    So many of these Legacy Strips, especially the soap opera ones, are too influenced by the serialized storytelling in TV shows. In TV you can make Topical humor/drama at the drop of a hat. In comics, it is so often just forced.

    Think of Calvin & Hobbes. There’s that one strip where a deer (s) bursts into an office place with guns. That was way out of the ordinary for the strip and for the funny pages. But, it wasn’t maudlin at all, it wasn’t preachy, it was just well-crafted and humorous.

    Yeah, I’m letting this bug me but dang it. Make it funny in the best way possible; don’t try to shoehorn a “situation” or an “issue” onto the gag. More readers would appreciate that more.

  197. Peanut Gallery
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:21 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#111): “To trip over one old log, Mr. Rusty, may be regarded as a misfortune; to trip over a second one looks like carelessness.”

  198. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:26 pm [Reply]

    MW-That’s not a seat. That’s just part of the column behind you.

  199. Illustrator Steve
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:29 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#183): IE: “Rusty and the SHEEP KILLERS should work together, THEY MAY EVEN TAKE HIM FISHING!”

    THIS could be a whole new comic strip! It could be called:
    “Rusty and the SHEEP KILLERS…Rebels without a clue, and their little dog too”.

  200. Illustrator Steve
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:38 pm [Reply]

    MT – In episode #1 of the new comic strip, “Rusty and the SHEEP KILLERS…Rebels without a clue and their little dog too”, the dysfunctional trio sic ‘Sassy, the puppy from hell’ onto the sent of Mark Trail. Sassy sics him out and waits patiently for the command to attack and dismember.

  201. Percival Dunwoody
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:40 pm [Reply]

    Funky Winkerbean meets Crock: How many virtual realities are in that silver lining?

  202. KreatureFeatures
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:42 pm [Reply]

    I should know better, but Gil Thorp upsets me today. Lurker Bob knows what I mean:
    First, Hamani Gaines (#33) catches and returns the kickoff that Terry booted. #8 appears to be closing in, but suddenly #22 makes a beautiful form tackle. Afterwards, Hamani inexplicably assumes a pass block stance, while Terry casually stands by.
    This angers Coach Thorp why? His kicker, the last line of on a return, perfectly tackles the ball returner, which is how the game should be played. I assume Gil’s mad because he instructed Terry to do nothing.
    But his remedy is to angrily send Terry off for defensive training, when the kid is clearly a natural at tackling? This is why Gil had a 1 and 9 record last year.

  203. KreatureFeatures
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:44 pm [Reply]

    Above should read “His kicker, the last line of defense on a return…”

  204. commodorejohn
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:45 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#185): That I’ll believe as a regional thing – “the” being (around here, anyway) pronounced “thuh,” while “th’” I presume is “thƏ” or so.

    As for anybody involved with Barney Google & Snuffy Smith being able to spell “economic,” let alone distinguish its possible pronunciations, I got nothin’.

  205. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 3:48 pm [Reply]

    If Rusty weren’t so darn out of proportion, so top heavy with that punkin head and those baby feet, he might be able to run normally and not careen head first thru the forest, tripping over old logs. In the old days, we called his problem “water on the brain.”

  206. bats :[
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:05 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#166): mostly because I don’t want to see the lioness hurt. “Evil spirits,” my rosy pink buttocks!

  207. Mary Worthless
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:20 pm [Reply]

    Good thing Dawn volunteers now, it looks like they are a little short handed at the hospital.

  208. terrapin
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:22 pm [Reply]

    Luann: This strip is what Gilligan’s Island would have been like if the Professor wasn’t there to baby-sit the other castaways.

  209. terrapin
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:24 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#206): If you wrote a strip called ‘Flying Sassy’ I’d read it every day.

  210. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:28 pm [Reply]

    FW-”I have no idea what this ‘cloud’ is but I’ve heard it referenced in connection to computer and this Interweb thing. And those seem pretty popular at the moment.”

  211. Marc
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:33 pm [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#169): I feel like the words “Edda” and “endearing quality” cannot peacefully coexist in the same sentence unless there is a negative in there somewhere. The next time she displays an endearing quality will be the first. Then the world will end.

  212. commodorejohn
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:35 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#206): Much improved!

  213. rumpled tulip
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:36 pm [Reply]

    @KreatureFeatures (#202):

    I admire you for trying to make sense of Gil Thorp. All I get when I read that strip is “sports sports sports kids who all look alike sports sports.”

  214. rumpled tulip
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:39 pm [Reply]

    @Ian Beste (#182): He’s a sub, she’s a dom and the wedding night will see dog collars and spike-heeled boots.

    Now THAT I would read faithfully.

  215. UncleJeff
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:46 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#206): Love the “whirrrrr” around Sassy’s ears.

  216. UncleJeff
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:48 pm [Reply]

    All the amputees lately are reminding me of I think it was a “Twilight Zone” episode where a woman who had been describing some sort of contest ended up showing the nubs of her amputated fingers.
    Anybody remember that episode?

  217. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:53 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#204): Not buying. No matter what dialect a person speaks, there are essentially just two ways of saying “the”. One rhymes with “duh”, with dictionaries usually representing the vowel sound with a schwa. The other way sounds like the word “thee”. One of my dictionaries says pronunciation #1 is usual before words starting with a consonant, and pronunciation #2 is usual before words starting with a vowel, but this is not hard and fast — there are many exceptions, and the opposite usage can not considered incorrect.

    But however Hootin’ Hollar pronounces the word, either #1 or #2 or both depending, it is perfectly standard, and the spelling th’ is what our fellow mudge The Ridger calls “eye dialect”. That is, just a way to show the reader that these people talk funny in general, even if, as in the case of the specific word “the”, they actually can’t.

  218. Never You Mind Who I Am
    September 13th, 2012 at 4:57 pm [Reply]

  219. Peanut Gallery
    September 13th, 2012 at 5:12 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#217): Robert Crumb and Bill Griffith also use the “th’” spelling. For them, I don’t think it’s intended as dialect so much as an indication of the shortness of the vowel sound in the way people actually talk — sort of like spelling “whaddaya know” instead “what do you know,” because in ordinary speech we don’t usually enunciate each word.

    But BG&SS has its own twisted logic. Such as the character’s name being spelled “Smith” in the title of the strip, yet always spelled “Smif” when it’s used within the world of the strip — not just in speech balloons, but also when it’s written.

  220. commodorejohn
    September 13th, 2012 at 5:17 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#217): Okay, I think I mis-stated (formal phonetics being very emphatically not my forte.) “Th’” ends with what (I think) would be an “unvoiced velar stop,” or the closest thing you can get to a dropped “uh” sound without actually dropping it – like “p’tato.”

    In all the times I’ve ever heard it, it’s because “thuh” has been clipped in rapid conversation, or by a child with a tendency to drop the endings of words (like the perennial “an’” in Dennis The Menace and The Family Circus, which, though ridiculous in its omnipresence, is fairly representative of a speech quirk kids that age of a certain age can have.) Why it is so omnipresent in Snuffy Smith, I can’t explain, the characters being not children and certainly not prone to doing anything rapidly. I guess either they just don’t give a shit (likely,) or it’s linguistic mutation after centuries of near-total isolation (also likely.)

  221. Sequitur
    September 13th, 2012 at 5:22 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#220): It’s hard to pronounce the “e” when one’s tongue is always lolling.

  222. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 13th, 2012 at 5:29 pm [Reply]

    @Never You Mind Who I Am (#218): Roald Dahl also adapted it in 1979 for his own ITV series “Tales of the Unexpected.”

  223. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 13th, 2012 at 5:34 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#219): But BG&SS has its own twisted logic. Such as the character’s name being spelled “Smith” in the title of the strip, yet always spelled “Smif” when it’s used within the world of the strip — not just in speech balloons, but also when it’s written.

    You’re right. And “the” is alway written th’ not just in speech balloons, but in signs and printed material. We’ve always supposed that Hootin’ Holler was some long isolated cove in the Apalachians or Ozarks, where the inbred people picked up or preserved some peculiarity or another. Some places got snake-handling religious cults. Hootin’ Holler got their hideous chinless phisiognomy of lolling tongues and huge noses, and an eccentric system of orthography.

  224. Ian Beste
    September 13th, 2012 at 6:42 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#223): 1. unvoiced velar stop
    2. physiognomy
    3. orthography
    4. Snuffy Smith

    One of these things is not like the other/one of these things just doesn’t belong…

  225. Alison
    September 13th, 2012 at 6:45 pm [Reply]

    “Luann”: I like how utterly stunned and terrified Brad and Luann look in that first panel, when the cop shows up. I wish Toni hadn’t been there, because I would have liked to hear their joint explanation to the cop, which surely would have gone something like this: “Oh er um oh hi there officer. Er we were just here to umm uh well um we were just um uhhh well…”

    “Mary Worth”: Why does Dawn have to get a boyfriend out of this? I think it would have been nice to show that volunteering can be-and *should* be-it’s own reward. You’re supposed to feel good about volunteering because you helped someone, not because you got yourself a hot date on the very first day.

  226. tallyHO
    September 13th, 2012 at 6:49 pm [Reply]

    // bah humburger! I was just typing here. I don’t know if it is adding anything.

    The Diabetees. /thuh di-uh-beet-teez/

    Sometimes when adding that particular determiner, it can make something more significant, and funny, than it is normally.

    But, like @commodorejohn (#220): points out, when leading a sentence or in a title it is usually intended to be pronounced properly. When “thuh” is used then it almost automatically treats the subject as a joke. (I’m spelling it “thuh” because if “thu” is in or ended a word, it would probably be pronounced / thoo /.

    I don’t know if anyone else mentioned it above, but, in conversational English, be it in a dialect or in colloquial speech, often the word which follows a word like “the” very much so determines the preferred pronunciation. My theory is that it does probably follow gender of the word (no examples come to mind right now) but can also depend greatly upon whether the word which follows begins with a vowel or consonant (thu potato; the apple). If it preceded a vowel then over the course of time, the vowel sound at the end of the determiner would be dropped and it would flow into the following word (and become th’apple–a bad example; there are better ones. I guess a good comparison is how in French le in front of a vowel would lead to contraction, i.e., l’art).

  227. Johnny Q
    September 13th, 2012 at 6:49 pm [Reply]

    MARY WORTH: Now Dawn can become Jim’s boyfriend, then dump Jim to get even with Dave! (John Cusack received similar advice in SAY ANYTHING…)

  228. Oregonian
    September 13th, 2012 at 6:54 pm [Reply]

    Be honest, Josh: Did you even notice that Jim’s arm was missing when you posted today’s Mary Worth?

  229. OMEGA SUPREME
    September 13th, 2012 at 6:55 pm [Reply]

    Judge Parker: By GAD, I love this strip. Bea’s expression in the last panel is priceless. Hope you like being pig scat, jerks!
    Get Bubba to stove their head in with a tire iron, feed ‘em to the swine, and get Bubba’s cousin Chico to get rid of that SUV.
    And then Bea will be mine, all mine.

    I love the way Bea just saunters into the cabin like nothing has happened. Does she think that they wouldn’t have noticed it missing? She should have thrown away the memory card, smashed the camera good and hard and then been all “Oh, Stinky the skunk stole it and we found in the creek!”

    Finally it’s odd that Avery, the big Hollywood movie producer, would go full Mark Trail – “You’re growing marihuana!” on seeing some pot plants. He’s old enough to have been in Hollywood in the 60′s and 70′s so his reaction is a little off. Who’s he supposed to be, John Milus?

  230. Honey Badger, Does not give a shit
    September 13th, 2012 at 7:01 pm [Reply]

    Sorry if I over snarked anyone. No time to read all.
    MW: I am looking at the shirt sleeve pinned up. I would imagine it would neater be folded the other way and pinned under the armpit. I guess it is a matter of preference whether the toilet roll goes over the front or down the back against the wall.

  231. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 7:13 pm [Reply]

    MW-This can only end with Jim breaking up with Dawn and out of sheer depression Dawn cutting off one of her arms just to win Jim back.

  232. pastordan, snark late shift
    September 13th, 2012 at 7:46 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#220): The th’ in Snuffy Smith is almost certainly a tribute/ripoff of Lil’ Abner.

  233. pastordan, snark late shift
    September 13th, 2012 at 7:49 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Speaker to Spam (#173):

    A little 3-in-1 oil would probably free you up.

    See you over on the slash-fic site then, I guess.

  234. Doyle
    September 13th, 2012 at 7:59 pm [Reply]

    @rumpled tulip (#164): No, of course not. Everything the ballerina does is adorable, endearing and whimsical. Hijunks ensue!

  235. wossname
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:22 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#206): Awesome! But I too am worried about the lioness. Has Phantom ever given us a reason to think they/it care(s) about animals?

  236. With Cat as my CEO
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:23 pm [Reply]

    @UncleJeff (#216): All those amputees remind me of the Ellen Jamesians from World According to Garp Will Mary meddle Dawn into or out of the Becky Winkerbeanians?

  237. Liam
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:34 pm [Reply]

    MW-My name’s Jim and my hobby is killing the wives of doctors and pinning the murders on them.

  238. Vince M
    September 13th, 2012 at 8:53 pm [Reply]

    MW: I only wish Jim’s having no arm would have something to do with a dice throw leading to a darkest timeline, but they’ll find some way to make it boring…

  239. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:29 pm [Reply]

    So boobalicious Bea and Avery Devito are having quite a spat, arms akimbo and veins popping. Meanwhile Sam Driver, quite uninvolved in the fracas, is trying to check out his profile in the mirror while the trolls have at it.

    “Damn, I look good.”

  240. Archivalist
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:48 pm [Reply]

    MW — Ha ha, Dave! Slick move shifting your empty glass from the left side of the tray to the right before Dawn could notice it. But since she’s clued into the ways of the sad little man-figments in her life, she’s noticed. Yeah, she’s noticed.

  241. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:52 pm [Reply]

    I, for one, am proud of the comics industry’s contribution to arms reduction in our world.

  242. commodorejohn
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:55 pm [Reply]

    @wossname (#235): Well, he did charter a tramp freighter (with a tramp captain!) to ferry an entire race of sentient amphibious lizard-people to safety.

    That said, I ‘spect the lioness is not gonna get out of this one. It wouldn’t be a good lesson on Primitive Superstition without some poor innocent getting speared to death.

  243. demoncat
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:55 pm [Reply]

    mw and thus dawn begins the cycle over again meet new guy get to know him get dumped life is brutal and back on the cruise and into marys hands.

  244. Chaze
    September 13th, 2012 at 9:59 pm [Reply]

    I also want to encourage Darby to keep this latest run of well-drawn funnystuff going in Get Fuzzy. Getting Bucky out of that claustrophobic apartment and away from the endless run of stupid proposed movie scripts and reality shows is a welcome relief. Love the Order of the Secret Salmon.

  245. Sgt. Stoned
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:04 pm [Reply]

    Snuffy Smif: panel one depicts Earth 1 Snuffy and panel two Earth 2 Snuffy.

    MW: Perhaps Jim is a southpaw who can’t get the hang of masturbating with his right and maybe Dawn could lend him a hand.

  246. Uncle Lumpy
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:09 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#242):

    Well, he did charter a tramp freighter (with a tramp captain!) to ferry an entire race of sentient amphibious lizard-people to safety.

    I would read the hell out of Savarna.

  247. GrafSpee
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:22 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#82) @Ukulele Ike (#101):

    It’s on a couple of the Clancy Brothers/Tommy Makem albums. YouTube has one of their renditions here: Bold Thady Quill.

  248. commodorejohn
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:23 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#246): Oh brother, would I ever!

  249. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 13th, 2012 at 10:36 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#237): I didn’t see that reference coming but damned if it doesn’t fit.

  250. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:08 pm [Reply]

    @wossname (#235):

    Awesome! But I too am worried about the lioness.

    That was also my first thought at this development. Of course, if a few villagers were to be mauled, I would consider that to represent acceptable, tactical losses.

    I’d be remiss not to post this relevant link to The Onion.

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/brave-mountain-lion-fends-off-group-of-hikers,2526/

    @Honey Badger, Does not give a shit (#230):

    “MW: I am looking at the shirt sleeve pinned up. I would imagine it would neater be folded the other way and pinned under the armpit.”

    Pinned Up is much more ostentatious, and therefore preferred. If you want to elicit maximum pathos, you can go for the Pinned Up with a Flourish look, aka ‘The Becky’.

  251. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 13th, 2012 at 11:12 pm [Reply]

    Phantom: Some sage advice for the lioness, from the Onion article:

    “Repeated biting of the skull and face is the textbook way to fend off a human attack,” said Mike Kasperski, biologist and author of the book Hikers: Shadows In The Forest.

  252. Tangerine
    September 14th, 2012 at 12:38 am [Reply]

    @rumpled tulip (#214):
    …are you sure you want to commit to that? It wouldn’t take much tweaking of Pibgorn for that storyline to appear as a crossover. I think we’d all have regrets if that were to come to pass.

  253. Elk Meadow
    September 14th, 2012 at 1:06 am [Reply]

    @Marc (#41):

    Luann- I feel like if I try to comment on the complete fucking idiocy of today’s strip, it will end up as just a bunch of obscenities and capital letters. So I’m going to attempt to refrain from commenting on how Evans has clearly never met a police officer, seen a mailbox, or doesn’t even have the vaguest idea of how the real world works.

    Given that Luann’s dad is Evans’ avitar, and that all he does is sit around inside the house except when he’s standing around outside the house, we may indeed assume that he really doesn’t have any idea.

    I understand from comments he made elsewhere, he does lurk in high school parking lots to study the teen age girls, and I did see his name at Comic Con, and he had a bunch of house guests, and his daughter likes steam punk. Here’s his latest blog:
    Now that I’ve talked about the musical that consumed most of my summer, let’s talk about LUANN. Although the musical took up a lot of time, LUANN is always my top priority. I spend more time and thought on it now than I ever have. Ten years ago, I worked in obscurity relative to my readers. Today, fans read each day’s strip at one second past midnight and the comments begin rolling in at GoComics, Luannalyzers and via email. The tangible eyeballs compel me to want to make the strip outstanding every day. Sometimes it doesn’t seem like it, I know. It’s hard to hit a home run every time. But I never take the strip or my readers for granted. Writing musicals is a hobby. Some cartoonists golf, some fish, some play in bands. As with any job, getting away is critical

    I don’t care about home runs. The fact that he’s not even in the ball park is what I see.

  254. Tangerine
    September 14th, 2012 at 1:29 am [Reply]

    Luann: Is updated for Friday on GoComics. I can still forgive this storyline if Luann forges ahead with her plan to use her seductive wiles.
    On other notes: Luann been given a one-sentence explanation of why she should not send her letter, which she has mindlessly gone along with. So I will also accept her realizing, in the middle of explaining why she MUST ILLEGALLY GET HER LETTER BACK, that she doesn’t even know why she’s doing this and hasn’t given it any thought at all.
    Also: the only justification for her sending a handwritten letter to Quill when she emails and Skypes with him (and probably IMs, too) is that she took special care to make the letter in question a beautiful keepsake kind of thing. In which case she wouldn’t be going along with this plan in the first place, or at least not without radiating distress and mortification. I can’t decide whether I despise Evan’s laziness or his Charley-esque sleaze more.

  255. Da Coconino Kid
    September 14th, 2012 at 2:07 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#123):

    Sometimes a parallel construction can be too much of a good thing — first time through, I read your words as:

    Job has to lose all his old wives and children and cattle, and get a nasty case of painful boils, before he can get new wives and children and cattle and boils.

    Ewwwww.

  256. Da Coconino Kid
    September 14th, 2012 at 2:18 am [Reply]

    @Cheeky (#158):

    Oh, and Conrad should definitely have voice-overs in the new fall show! :)

    Yeah, I know he did the voice of that fat cat, but even so, Lorenzo Music, in his “Carlton your doorman” mode, would’ve been the perfect voice for Conrad.

  257. Da Coconino Kid
    September 14th, 2012 at 2:53 am [Reply]

    @Elk Meadow (#253):

    tangible eyeballs

    Ewwwwwww.

    Although, maybe not a bad name for a techno/psychedelic crossover band

  258. Morgan Wick
    September 14th, 2012 at 4:51 am [Reply]

    Wait, wait, wait. Isn’t the real development here that Snuffy and his friend are actually doing something productive that might actually benefit their family? Naturally, they’re pissed off that they have to do this “work” thing, even when it’s something they’ve always done for fun anyway.

    Alternately: I’m guessing this is a glimpse at the Hootin’ Holler version of TDIET. Naturally, there is no Hootin’ Holler version of Pluggers, because if there were anyone more down-home than the Hollerers the universe might implode.

    By the way, by my count this is the 850th Mary Worth post on the Comics Curmudgeon. This has been the Useless Trivia Factoid of the Day.

  259. Lenoxus
    September 14th, 2012 at 7:46 am [Reply]

    “They may say I’m superficial for marrying my wife for her looks but not for the ones she’s been giving me lately.” Apparently people have been telling Herb, “Look, if you’re going to marry a woman just cuz she’s hot, at least go about it the non-superficial way make sure it’s someone who looks at you angrily all the time.”

  260. Beetle Bumstead
    September 14th, 2012 at 6:58 pm [Reply]

    (MW) OK I took the bait. Not only is the dude lacking a left arm, in panel 1 the right arm is detached from the body hovering in space. Looks like a spinoff to me. Something like Mork & Mindy. Maybe Network TV (the last refuge of heritage strips?) will pick up “Dawn and the Dweeb”?

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