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Comics get Tolstovian

Mary Worth, 9/16/12

The “Dawn gets dumped and mopes and goes to Italy and is in a shipwreck but is rescued” storyline sure has had a lot of twists and turns and so far, but now we are truly seeing the 100% amazing payoff: Dawn is comparing an admittedly traumatic incident from which she emerged completely unscathed physically with a traumatic incident in which a young man whom she just met lost an arm. Her adventures over the past few weeks sure have provided her with some much-needed perspective about her troubles! Nevertheless, we already know that this will somehow work as a pickup technique, since an epigram from Anaïs Nin surely portends incipient sexytimes.

Mark Trail, 9/16/12

Mark, for a so-called naturalist, you have some funny ideas about our relationship with phylum Arthopoda! Nature is a rich, vibrant tapestry, and the idea that humans and spiders are allies in some kind of “war” against insects is simplistic and reductive. No, clearly both spiders and insects are mankind’s implacable enemies, seeing as they are gross disgusting creepy-crawlies; but their mutual hostility is a boon to us, and we must pit each against each other in order to keep both groups weak. A spider-insect alliance, particularly one with support from their centipede and millipede relatives, would surely overwhelm us, so must surreptitiously encourage intra-arthropod hostility at all costs.

Hi and Lois, 9/16/12

The most disturbing thing about Trixie’s school fantasy is that she apparently assumes that by the time she’s of school age there will be two of her. This may be the way her infant mind processes the existence of her twin siblings — perhaps she believes that Dot and Ditto were born as a single person but then split into two before the age of five. On the other hand, Trixie also seems to believe that she’ll be reading Tolstoy in kindergarten, which shows a certain degree of intellectual precocity.

Panels from Slylock Fox, 9/16/12

I love how upset the two construction workers at the bottom left of today’s Six Differences look. “Noooo, what are you doing? Your blundering, amateurish excavation techniques are ruining the integrity of the dig site! This is a priceless paleontological find, but we’re losing so much data as you drag the fossils out of the ground willy-nilly!”

Luann, 9/16/12

Mr. Fogarty would gladly give up the burdens of sentience if doing so meant that he’d never have to deal with any of the morons in this strip ever again.

244 responses to “Comics get Tolstovian”

  1. debussy fields
    September 16th, 2012 at 1:48 pm [Reply]

    MW—Another ambiguous first sentence to begin today’s strip. “And perhaps something else…” refers to what, exactly? Something else other than volunteer duty, or something else other than the hospital? WTF. And is that arrow going to be explained tomorrow? What does it say on the wall to the right, off screen? “He’s With Stupid”? And why is that guy in green butting into the conversation from the back of the room? Mind your own damned business, which seems to be balancing several glass jars on your forearm, showing off in front of all the amputees in the room.

  2. Joshua
    September 16th, 2012 at 1:48 pm [Reply]

    MW: Check out the facial expression on the guy in the last panel. You can see how sickened he is by the thought of having to listen to Dawn describe her “traumatic experience.”

  3. Lupin The 3.1415926th
    September 16th, 2012 at 1:56 pm [Reply]

    “I too, have gone through a traumatic experience lately…”

    So have I. It’s called “Reading ‘Mary Worth’ on a daily basis”. Geez, who TALKS like that?

    Also, Re: Hi & Lois: Why does Future Trixie still only have three tufts of hair on her head? Better see the school nurse, it might be a skin condition.

  4. Euthyphronics
    September 16th, 2012 at 1:56 pm [Reply]

    I love the amputee’s expression in the final MW panel. You can just hear him thinking, “Oh god, not someone else who thinks they understand the living hell my life’s become. Please, just give me the sweet solace of death now.”

  5. dyslexic dog
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:02 pm [Reply]

    @Joshua (#2): And in case you’re having a tough time locating him, Moy and Giella have provided a huge black arrow for assistance.

  6. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:03 pm [Reply]

    Luann An essay. And none of them has managed a complete sentence. But why didn’t anyone pick Jumping Spider? Don’t they read Mark Trail?

    MW Jim doesn’t look like he’s eager to see Dawn’s perspective.
    “I cried because I had no arm, until I met a self-absorbed hospital volunteer who had no clue. And then I yelled at her.”

    FC Bil, Thel, ask yourselves: Were you better off 4 Keanes ago?

  7. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:04 pm [Reply]

    MW – Jim suddenly looks sullen and hair seems to have sprouted on his chest. Hopefully that mean’s he’s developed the sac to tell Dawn to lunch elsewhere as she starts her “enough about you, let me tell you about me spiel”

    // Oh yeah, that black arrow pointed at his head does not portend well at all.

  8. bbofun
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:04 pm [Reply]

    LUANN- “As decisive as a lion” is a phrase that never really caught on.

    MAYBE BECAUSE LIONS DO NOT SEEM PARTICULARLY DECISIVE!

  9. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    MT – “Essay in puce and chartreuse.” I mean EVERYTHING in puce and chartreuse. Meanwhile sticking a headshot of Connie Francis was nice. Not sure what it accomplished but I’m sure she appreciated it b

  10. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    @bbofun (#8): LUANN- “As decisive as a lion” is a phrase that never really caught on.

    MAYBE BECAUSE LIONS DO NOT SEEM PARTICULARLY DECISIVE!

    Yet that will be Gunther’s excuse after he kills and eats Rosa.

  11. Lupin The 3.1415926th
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    @bbofun (#8):

    I don’t know, that one in The Phanton seems to have decided to eat all the Lllongo. Even death can’t stop it!

  12. Baka Gaijin
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:09 pm [Reply]

    I love how Dagwood jumped into Buckles and snarfed the pizza right from under Buckles’ owners’ noses.

    Also, we have Tolstoyvision on channel 324. What? Tolstovian? Oh. Nevermind.

  13. Lupin The 3.1415926th
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:09 pm [Reply]

    PhantoM. Curse my sloppy typing!

  14. dyslexic dog
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:09 pm [Reply]

    @bbofun (#8):
    Oh yes they are, sorta.
    Signed, Leo the Lion

  15. sporknpork
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:11 pm [Reply]

    “Hmmm, I need the reader to feel even more self-hating and misanthropic when Dawn makes Jim feel like complete shit. But how? I know! I’ll draw a big stupid arrow pointing at his tears!”

  16. Crankenstank
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:12 pm [Reply]

    I noticed nobody in “Luann” answered “human being.” Beware the robots!!!!

  17. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:14 pm [Reply]

    Jump Start – How to ruin an interesting character. Case study: Crunchy. Formerly a grumpy, hirsute, pet-owning, possibly closeted bear cop partner. Now married to Capt. Ruiz. What good did that do for the strip in anyway except make its most interesting character boring?

  18. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:14 pm [Reply]

    FW Careful? Careful? Careful would be to stay on the right side of the BIKE path in single file, especially when you have an ass wide enough to occupy both lanes.

  19. bats :[
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:17 pm [Reply]

    Nin? REALLY?!?

    And it’s not about the spiders. Not really…

  20. Chance
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:18 pm [Reply]

    Ha ha, look how totally morose and broken ol’ Jim is in that last panel of Mary Worth. It’s like he knows he’s in a horrible soap opera with ludicrous writing and it’s only going to go downhill from here.

  21. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:18 pm [Reply]

    Curtis – Barry, you’re gonna grow up to be gay. Everyone sees it and everyone knows it and now you just ruined the one thing you and your brother can do together for fun – dishin’ on fashion. Melonhead.

  22. captainswift
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:29 pm [Reply]

    Knute wants to be a 37-year-old woman? This is an aspect of the character I’ve never realized before, but if it’s handled sensitively and well, I think it could be some groundbreaking comics entertainment which will never run in Southern newspapers.

  23. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:33 pm [Reply]

    RMMD – She definitely belongs to you and Rex, Juniepie. Good luck with that one.

    FC – However, the one with the baseball cap on backwards who’s looking at the sun through a telescope concerns me a bit

    SFx – Yes, our winning drawer, Natalie age 12, has just signed on to handle the artwork for Mark Trail. Good luck, Natalie, we’re all happy about the upgrade.

  24. Liam
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:33 pm [Reply]

    MW-I say accident when it was really chopped off by a mob lead by a gray hair old woman who said that southpaws don’t have a place here.

    A3G-I know a button that you would like him to push.

  25. missal
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    MW: Did Anais Nin ever write amputee erotica? I’ll bet she did.

    MT: So why does that chick disappear after the second panel? Considering how dilated her pupils are, it’s not hard to guess.

  26. Naked Bunny with a Whip
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    Fortunately for science, that’s not a paleontological find. The construction workers have dug into Hell. The only difference between the pictures is the order in which the workers will be viciously killed before their souls are condemned for eternity.

  27. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:41 pm [Reply]

    urg.

    bored.

    back at the coffee shop for more internets.

    on the plus side, I got to pet the neighbors 6-month-and-1-day old Rottiepup this morning. According to Nina’s owners, she looks up every time she gets walked past our house. :-D

    I really need to bug the ‘rents for newer pics of their Lab pup.

    ummm, comicscomicscomics.

    oh, yeah.

    Candorville was actually non-sucky today.

  28. Naked Bunny with a Whip
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:41 pm [Reply]

    Is that what Cherry is doing in the first panel? Flinching? Because it looks more like she ate some bad mushrooms on her walk.

  29. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    DtM – High and outside? Yeah, Dennis and his dad out on the porch doing a couple of doobies.

    JP – “This is good coffee. GOOD coffee. Hey, quiet down. I don’t care if you are advancing the plot line, let me enjoy this coffee.”

    MW- That is some magic food they serve at the hospital. On disappearing trays, no less.

  30. Baka Gaijin
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:43 pm [Reply]

    Judging by his facial expression in the last panel, a quick chat with Dawn has given Jim gastric dilatation volvulus.

  31. Liam
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:44 pm [Reply]

    MT-Interesting appearance by Cherry in here. It’s like the writer is saying that women are like spiders. They want to trap us in their webs and drain us dry.

    MW-Dawn’s comment in the last panel is the understatement of the year when you are talking to the one armed man.

  32. Liam
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:50 pm [Reply]

    Curtis-Curtis’ mother just likes beating him for no reason and Barry likes to watch.

  33. DaveyK
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:54 pm [Reply]

    Luann would have us believe the average teenage boy carries lust for Milla Jovivich in their heart. Which tells you pretty much all you need to know about the level of verisimilitude in Luann.

  34. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:57 pm [Reply]

    9CL – Seth, if you were half as cool as Solange, you’d be twice as cool as you really are.

    //By the way, are those the ping pong balls they were flinging around last week from their pianos? You remember, the joke 90% of the readers didn’t get, which was exactly as intended.

  35. seismic-2
    September 16th, 2012 at 2:59 pm [Reply]

    So today Leo Tolstoy shows up in both “H&L” and “Luann”. Now we know how he got the inspiration for the finale to Anna Karenina.

  36. Troostie
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:00 pm [Reply]

    MW- Is that an “I’m with stupid” arrow in the final panel?

    MT- Mark just let a “barking spider” go. That’s why the jumping spider is jumping.

  37. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:01 pm [Reply]

    Hey….out of the blue and off topic:

    Should I get myself involved and invested in “Before Watchmen?”

  38. Downpuppy
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:01 pm [Reply]

    On top of everything else in the last panel of Mary Worth, they both look well over 50. OK, still younguns to most of the readers, but even they remember you’re supposed to be out of school by that age.

  39. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    MT – I bet any of those spiders could kick Clown 9′s ass.

  40. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:04 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#37): I did see a new MAD reprint book of superhero stuff that includes the movie WATCHMEN parody, plus a comic one I hadn’t known about, and have given some serious thought to purchasing that. But “Before Watchmen” doesn’t seem serious enough to me.

  41. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:06 pm [Reply]

    For all you Bernstein fans who didn’t get up in time for it, here’s my Prince Valiant comment from earlier on. I’d never be so crass as to repeat it here, but linking it is juuust crass enough.

  42. Cloudbuster
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:07 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Has anyone else noticed that Crystal’s response is batshit insane?

  43. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:07 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#31): I can get you links to a couple of monstergirl manga that cover that. . . .

  44. Rav
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:08 pm [Reply]

    MW: Look at Dawn’s face in that last panel. Now try and tell me with a straight face that this is supposed to be the face of a 19 year old. She looks like an exhausted 50 year old. Dresses like one, too.

  45. seismic-2
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:08 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#37): No. Setting aside the whole “DC continue to rip-off the creators” controversy, the simple fact is that there are dozens of way better comics every month in which you can get involved, and they are more worthy of your time and financial support.

  46. rumpled tulip
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    MW: Jim’s arm loss will seem like small potatoes once that flying arrow sinks itself into his skull. But from the look on his face, I’d say he welcomes his impending death. At least then he won’t have to hear about Dawn’s minor cruise inconvenience.

    MT: Spiders sound way more bad-ass than Spiderman. I’ve never seen him jump after his prey!

    RMMD: “We’re rich, we’re rich, we’re richie richie rich…oh yeah, and I think we have a kid somewhere.”

  47. TheDiva
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    Silly Josh, don’t you know that the INSECTS!!! are in league with the villainous WOLVES!!?

  48. He Brought Queenie Baby Jesus
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:17 pm [Reply]

    Nice “essays”, champs. As usual, Knute shows the most awareness, though perhaps not of his gender identity.

    Also I notice Delta would be an African animal, and that makes me almost as angry as Luann and Bernice’s answers.

  49. ScienceGiant
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    A million spiders per acre — your Mark Trail freak out fact for the day. Oh, I’m sorry. I meant millionS. Millions lying in wait as you are standing still in an empty field.

    Enjoy Nature, folks!

  50. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:21 pm [Reply]

    @ScienceGiant (#49): Yes, but many of those spiders are only visible to excessive meth users. Particularly the little red ones.

  51. kkarenb
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:23 pm [Reply]

    MW – The trauma at sea has turned Dawn into a Topper.

    Classic Peanuts – I’d expect that of Rusty Trail, but not Linus. Why didn’t he find something to read and THEN pour the milk on his cereal?

  52. Mayor Nays
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:25 pm [Reply]

    @Joshua (#2): They’re going to fall deeply in love through their mutual interest in moping. But it won’t last because they’re too competitive.

  53. Dagger
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:27 pm [Reply]

    MT: “Ha ha, no need to give into your womanly fears, Cherry! That’s only a black widow, one of only two spiders in the country that can cause serious injury. How do you identify these ones so you can be aware of them? The answer is, check out this guy’s sweet jump!”

    SF: At least in the second panel the excavator operator has an excuse. “I told you we shouldn’t proceed when the one control stick mysteriously disappeared but noooo…”

  54. Neyba Bob
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:29 pm [Reply]

    SFx:Well, this one has me stumped. All I’ve got is that it can’t be the pig, because the haul does not include the obvious decoy item to throw the suspicion of simple-minded detectives like Slylock Fox off the thief’s identity, which in the case of an anthropomorphic pig might be a bacon slicer or a walking stick.
    Unless of course this pig is particularly stupid …
    or spectacularly clever.

  55. KreatureFeatures
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:35 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): No way! Livestock?

  56. Baka Gaijin
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:36 pm [Reply]

    @ScienceGiant (#49): There’s one in my kitchen as we speak. Oh no, where did it go? It was on the wall. Damn.

  57. KreatureFeatures
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:38 pm [Reply]

    Spiderman: It’s strange, but I’ve completely lost interest in the outcome of this circus fight. Can we see how MJ’s play is going instead?

  58. Chyron HR
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:38 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#37): I’m holding off on reading “Before Watchmen” until I’ve finished Karen Traviss’s “Before Foundation”.

  59. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:38 pm [Reply]

    @Neyba Bob (#54): yur posting nick, melikee!!!

  60. laila
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:40 pm [Reply]

    Luann: I can’t help but notice that ‘evil, vapid’ Tiffany has managed to work out that the question calls for some kind of explanation as to why she thinks she should be a unicorn rather than anything else, whereas ‘smart, sensitive’ Luann appears to have gotten stuck on OMG I LIKE PUPPIES GIGGLE GIGGLE GIGGLE.

    I still have no idea why their teacher is also doing the assignment. Or why he’s given them an ‘essay’ more suited to third-graders…. well, except that this is the cast of Luann we’re dealing with, anyway.

  61. commodorejohn
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:41 pm [Reply]

    Well, I’d better snark now, before it gets any later – I just got my gaming PC back and the siren-song of Oblivion is calling…

    Agnes – Two lost souls, on the highway of life…

    A&J – Funky Winkerbean, you ain’t got shit on Arlo & Janis for well-executed melancholy.

    Bizarro – I would watch the hell out of this. And I’m not even a sports fan.

    Curtis – “Mothra lives!” A title desperately in need of an album, ladies and gentlemen.

    DT – Every so often in the new Dick Tracy, there’s a whoa! moment where I’m stunned and amazed to find that the weird, surreal events I’m reading are actually coherent and make some kind of sense. While I’m recovering, I’d like to just take a moment to point out that that is a kickass shark in the background.

    FG – Man, and after he saved you from freezing to death and everything. Dick move, Blaze.

    FW – I have no idea if this is supposed to be a joke, but what the hell, it’s a Funky Winkerbean that doesn’t make me contemplate suicide and/or murder. That’s far more worthy of remark.

    JP – Wow. Bubba must make a pile off that field to just hand out mortgages’ worth of hush money like that. Anyway, it’s the return of Angry Bea! Oh, madam, how we’ve missed you!

    Luann – Luann is a dumb bitch. Delta is perpetually sprinting off to something or other, but can never hold up in the long run. Bernice is a destructive nuisance insect. Tiffany is a closet nerd who probably watches Ridley Scott’s Legend on a weekly basis. Crystal needs to either be smacked in the face, or be forced to work checkout at a Hot Topic until she’s exposed to people like her enough that she wants to smack herself in the face. Knute is apparently transsexual, which actually explains a lot. Gunther thinks he would be less pathetic as an animal, but we all know he wouldn’t.

    MT – Jumping spiders I’ve heard of, but flying spiders are new.

    MW – Wouldn’t you get the prosthetic and then do physical therapy? You know, so you actually know how to use it? Nah, this super-pouty whiner is just looking for attention, that’s what it is.

    PBS – MY HERO.

    PV – Hahaha oh man. TEA WILL DESTROY BRITAIN AS IT HAS DESTROYED LOCKBRAMBLE! (I was curious about its range, so I looked it up – apparently tea is actually grown in Cornwall, but that’s the southernmost part of the whole country, and in any case I doubt ol’ Bathrobes is an expert on cultivation. Prince Valiant – educational and entertaining!)

    RMMD – Little Lady Napoleon prepares for conquest.

    SM – That? That!? That was the only thing you could think of? Geez, I never thought I’d be telling a superhero how to do his job, but for fuck’s sake, run another web to one of the tent supports! It’s holding up a whole damn circus tent, it’s not a weak structure! Better yet, angle the rocket so that you swing ’round the pole Clod-Whine is standing on and brain ‘im with it! For crying out loud, I don’t even have spider-powers and I know how to use them better than that!

  62. Neyba Bob
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:43 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#59): Been using it on here for a while now; you’re the first to pick up on it :-)

  63. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:45 pm [Reply]

    bb,u has been posting boozelols again.

  64. Alfred E. Neuman
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:45 pm [Reply]

    MT— Man’s perpetual war against the insect world? Like honey bees and lady bugs? Mark has become an invertebrate liar.

    MW— For some inexplicable reason, Jim is unimpressed by Dawn’s attempt to be disarming.

  65. dodoman1
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:47 pm [Reply]

    Most people would flinch at a spider that is clearly at least the size of your face, Mark. I suppose that’s true.

  66. Horace Broon
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:48 pm [Reply]

    DT: “He doesn’t know what kind of virus is on his computer! He must be a cop!”

    HtH: Hagar’s crew know that as a band of marauding Vikings, they aren’t actually fighting for any of those things.

    JP: Well, that clearly establishes that she’s not in league with him at all…

    MW: That last panel is a beautiful protrayal of someone wishing he already had his prosthetic, so he could beat the self-absorbed girl over the head with it.

    PV: My disappointment that Roger’s exotic herbage isn’t anything stronger is alleviated by my enjoyment of the “Tea in Britain? It’ll never catch on!” gag.

    SF: “I may or may not have a science project about disproving gravity depending on how well I was listening when it was assigned” FTW!

  67. debussy fields
    September 16th, 2012 at 3:49 pm [Reply]

    MW– Wait until Jim hits Dawn with what’s really bothering him: “I killed David Janssen’s wife!”

  68. Inkwell
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:08 pm [Reply]

    Slylock- The reason he looks so horrified is he’s disturbed by the digger’s tacky blackface getup.

  69. btown
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:12 pm [Reply]

    The composition of panel 1 in today’s Mark Trail is great. “Most of us flinch at the site of them” right next to the giant spider and giant Cherry head.

  70. bats :[
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:15 pm [Reply]

  71. Poor Thompson
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:17 pm [Reply]

    I don’t regularly read LuAnn, but I notice she’s depicted as being left-handed. Does anyone know if this is a consistant character trait? Being a southpaw myself, I notice these things. I don’t know of any comic strip characters who are, with the possible exception of Bucky Katt (sometime he is, sometimes not.)

  72. Mibbitmaker
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:17 pm [Reply]

    Doones (the throwaways): Uh, that’s not so complimentary. See a week of old 9 Chickweed Lane strips for why…

    MT: “Dames! Whatayagonna do? (smug snicker)”

    Off-Model Popeye Sundays: Sh! Don’t let Ignatz know!

    RMMD: Sarah just made a huge mistake!

    RwO: The Blanthony Caine Special, they call it. Fun for the kids!

  73. MWDG
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:18 pm [Reply]

    MW: Couple of important points here. If Dawn is only 19 now, then we must suppose she was underage in the State of California when she had sexual relations with Drew Corey. Guess her early experimentation led to her boredom with “normal intercourse” and led to her fetish for amputees like Jim.

    In a week Jim has gone from one of the most effeminate men to ever live in Santa Royale to a squared jawed he-man. Wilbur is going to go gaga when Dawn brings him over to the condo. Even resident Lesbian, Terry Bryson may succumb to Jim’s charm
    .

  74. Anonymous
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    mw Nice job, Dawn. Way to remind the poor sap about the incident at the petting zoo with the banana peel and the running snowblower. Yes, one incident can change your life forever, but at least your recent tragedy hasn’t been “liked” on Youtube 340 thousand times.

    mt Holy shit, we’re at war with the insects? Why did no one tell me this? I’m glad, though, since we so handily won the war on poverty, the war in Vietnam, the war on drugs, the war on terrorism and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. *grabs can of raid and goes out to garden to spray-down some monarch butterflies*

  75. Señor Tortilla
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    ReFOOB – Beyond the typical “John is a jerkass” premise, the pencil-necks are a bit unsettling.

    yA3G – I remember the Waco Optimist’s Club wasn’t in the best part of town…

    yGA – I enjoy bug-eyed Slim.

    @Chaze (#34): You’re too kind.

    MT – Spiders! Competent and clever!

    S-M – Spider-Man! The opposite!

  76. SE
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:32 pm [Reply]

    “On the other hand, Trixie also seems to believe that she’ll be reading Tolstoy in kindergarten…”
    Yeah, Charlie Brown and Linus didn’t get to Tolstoy until they were halfway through first grade.

  77. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:38 pm [Reply]

    @Poor Thompson (#71): I don’t regularly read LuAnn, but I notice she’s depicted as being left-handed.

    I also noticed that Luann and Tiffany have the same handwriting. Then, they are, in fact, the same person with a split-personality disorder. That begs the question why doesn’t Luann have at least some personality.

  78. Maria
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:40 pm [Reply]

    MW: Doesn’t Dawn’s comment seem a lot like Kim K’s??

  79. Dartpaw86
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worth’s Where’s Waldo, except this is “Where’s the Ethnic Guy?”

  80. pugfuggly
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    MW Dawn’s friend is about to undergo another life-changing incident: an arrow to a head! Ha ha, but seriously, what good is an arrow without some kind of sign telling you what it’s pointing at?

    MT I feel like Mark should be delivering this little arachnid lesson in the voice of a 1940s newsreel presenter. “And here’s another jumping spider battalion, heading out to the coleopteran front. Go get ‘em, boys!”

    H&L I’m picturing a Trixie/Crankshaft crossover comic called Kids these days…!

    Luann A dog with its head out the car window? Sometimes I think you make it just a little too easy for your so-called bully.

  81. Citric
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:44 pm [Reply]

    MW – I like how the look on the guy’s face is basically. “Oh, abloobloobloo, a traumatic experience, It must be soooooo bad little miss BOTH ARMS STILL ATTACHED!”

  82. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:45 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#45): Thanks, Seismic. I understand that Alan Moore is dead set against Before Watchmen, wanting his original work to remain “as a complete piece.” I love Watchmen so much that the new series intrigues me greatly. Thus far, I’ve avoided it.

  83. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:51 pm [Reply]

    LuAnn – I guess this explains the slobber that’s all over the DeGroot family sedan.

  84. bats :[
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:51 pm [Reply]

    @KreatureFeatures (#55): oh, my, YES! There was a Sunday MT a few years back featuring tornadoes (Mark Trail: he’s not just for living creatures anymore), and there were cows in the air! Cows. In. The. Air!

  85. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:52 pm [Reply]

    LUANN — I’m an animal, you’re an animal, we human beings are all animals. And the characters in LUANN are, thank heaven, imaginary.

  86. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:52 pm [Reply]

    Tolstoy today, tomorrow what? Ayn Rand?

  87. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:55 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#85): Poteet, you almost had me hearing Pete Shelley’s “Homosapien” there for a minute.

  88. bats :[
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:56 pm [Reply]

    I wasn’t around for the Conception Plot years ago, but I guess the take-home message in today’s RMMD is “Procreate in haste, repent at leisure.”

  89. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:56 pm [Reply]

    MT — Don’t worry, nearby insects, I’m a conscientious objector.

  90. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:58 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#88): I think the Heather Mommy story might feature a twist or two.

  91. Santa Royale With Cheese
    September 16th, 2012 at 4:59 pm [Reply]

    MT: Indeed Josh, I’m allied with spiders like Saddam Hussein was allied with the Kurds. “That’s a fine looking web you made, there. Squish!”

    Also @Anonymous #74, don’t you remember that documentary Starship Troopers? We’ve always been at war with the bugs!

  92. bunivasal
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:06 pm [Reply]

    That’s not “Tolstoy”, it’s baby Trixie’s adorable way of pronouncing “Toy Story”. It’s a toy story quiz.

    Ah, Knute. Which is more troubling, his deeply held desire to be a woman, or his belief that women are animals in a strip that regularly depicts its female characters–even its eponymous Luann–as idiots.

  93. Anonymous
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    @wossname (#y175):

    “Come on, don’t you think Rusty looks like a Campbell’s soup can?”

    With the cold weather coming on, be sure to tell YOUR mom to stock up on plenty of Campbell’s Cream of Rusty soup! It’s um-um stupid!

  94. Shrug, Speaker to Spam
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    Oops, that was me.

  95. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:28 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#61): Fair Game? Flash Gordon? Foxy Grandpa? Fritzi Gritz? Fukken Groovy? Forrest Gump? Five Girls? Forever Green? Fender’s Game? Flibberty Gibbet? Fizz Gigs? Fubble Gubble? Fasoline Galley? Friday Gal? Fappy Gilmore?

  96. pastordan, snark late shift
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:30 pm [Reply]

    Just when I thought the ROI on reading 9 Chickweed Lane couldn’t sink below that of The Amazing Spider-Man

    Cul de Sac: I want a Stick of the Day…

    Judge Parker: You can just hear the gears turning behind Avery’s coke-bottle lenses. If I throw money at the problem, I have a chance of getting laid that falls within six standard deviations…

    The Lockhorns: Okay, I admit it. I sympathized with Leroy in the center panel. Does that make me a terrible person?

    Mark Trail: HUMANITY HAS ALWAYS BEEN AT WAR WITH EASTASIA THE ARACHNID EMPIRE.

    Mary Worth: 1. “…an epigram from Anaïs Nin surely portends incipient sexytimes with Daddy.” Fixed that for you. 2. Nearly every panel of today’s strip is improved with the addition of “in bed” to the dialog. 3. That enormous black arrow isn’t pointing the shell-shocked veteran whose sob story we will be examining in loving detail for the next 14 weeks, but to the invisible Glock he’s going to use when he finally snaps.

    Rex Morgan, M.D.: Dressage horses? First-class? Screw Sam Driver. Rex Morgan, M.D. is Mitt Romney.

  97. pastordan, snark late shift
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:33 pm [Reply]

    @Poor Thompson (#71): Interesting. I’ve always thought Luann resembled my older sister, who is left-handed…

  98. cartooncritic2544
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:42 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#93): Cream of Rusty

    For the LOVE OF GOD, where is the brain bleach!?!!?

  99. pastordan, snark late shift
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:45 pm [Reply]

    Also, too. Cherry’s expression in Mark Trail is priceless. “Good thing I’m too fucked up on smack and glue to react to that spider. Wait, is that spider real? I am soooo wasted…”

  100. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:46 pm [Reply]

    RMMD — How much would it cost to fly to San Diego and rent a place next to the ocean for a couple of days on their own dime and not have a crabby ultra-entitled old woman on their case? I know most doctors aren’t uber-rich, but since June has frequent-flier miles, she and Rex obviously have enough moolah to fly occasionally. From their extended reaction to this trip, you’d think they were too poor to even think about seeing the ocean if it weren’t for Melissa. As for Widdoo Sawah, if they wanted a dependent who would consider them the most important beings on earth during every waking moment, they should have gotten a dog.

  101. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:52 pm [Reply]

    MW: Of course, Karen Moy hasn’t the least idea who Anaïs Nin was, and if any of her unironical readers ever find out, there will be angry letters to the editors and syndicates.

    // Yet surely, somewhere, some grandmother is saying to herself, “What a pretty thought! I wonder who this Anais Nin person was? Now what was that googley thing my grand-daughter was showing me… ?”

  102. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:53 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

  103. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:55 pm [Reply]

    9CL — Solange, I’ll say it again — your agent should find you a better gig.

  104. Shrug, Speaker to Spam
    September 16th, 2012 at 5:57 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19):

    You forgot the Flying Cows of Biloxi….

    http://www.sfsite.com/fsf/2005/cur0510.htm

  105. Joshua
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:00 pm [Reply]

    @DaveyK (#33): Check this weekend’s box office report, and notice who plays the lead role in the #1 film.

  106. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:00 pm [Reply]

    PV — I seem to have low-class unrefined tastebuds, because although I drink it, I can’t envision getting all that hepped up about tea. Now if Roger had somehow been introduced to chocolate, that would have been different.

  107. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:03 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#106): Taste buds have nothing to do with it. There’s caffeine in those thar leaves!

  108. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:03 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#41): Wow!!! Definitely worth the link.

  109. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:04 pm [Reply]

    Of course I meant “them thar.” I blush and stammer.

  110. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:06 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#106): Ah, of course. And I suppose it was way too early to discover and flog Red Bull.

  111. pingo1387
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:13 pm [Reply]

    LUANN – Apparently essays today consist of a single sentence.

  112. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:14 pm [Reply]

    @bbofun (#8): Thank you. Though if Gunther ever meets up with a lion, I hope the lion will quickly decide to disembowel him. Whatever appeal Gunther is supposed to have is completely lost on me.

  113. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:15 pm [Reply]

    @pingo1387 (#111): Or in Luann’s case, a sentence fragment.

  114. John
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:16 pm [Reply]

    Hi and Lois: Funny Hi and Loises are all alike; unfunny Hi and Loises are each unfunny in their own way.

  115. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:17 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#113): Wait, they’re all sentence fragments except for Crystal’s work. I wonder what kind of crow she was, and where.

  116. Red Bull
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:18 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#110):

    ” And I suppose it was way too early to discover and flog Red Bull.”

    Never too early, kid. Let’s just agree on the safe word first.

  117. BigTed
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:30 pm [Reply]

    So the weird nerdy dude doesn’t want to sleep with Milla Jovovich, but BE her? I guess that means he’d like to spend his life killing zombies and appearing in makeup ads, which actually doesn’t sound that bad. Or else he just misheard the title of “Being John Malkovich.”

  118. commodorejohn
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:31 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#95): Flash Gordon, the *ahem* <voice=”Veterinarian’s Hospital announcer”>continuing stooory</voice> of a couple of incompatibly elemental-themed people having a bitter, nasty breakup wherein they try to kill each other, and a couple of slightly boneheaded space travelers who get involved before bothering to learn the whole situation…

  119. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:37 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#115): Nevermore…

  120. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:38 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#120): And yes, I know it was a raven. And that Poe lived much later than the 1500s. But I doubt that Crystal does.

  121. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:38 pm [Reply]

    @where can i buy v2 cigs (#119): You know, I was saying exactly that the other day.

  122. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:40 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#121): I thought maybe Crystal was Jason Lee in a previous life.

  123. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:42 pm [Reply]

    @BigTed (#117): Let’s not forget Knute wore a dress during his little shopping spree with Crystal the Crow.

  124. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:43 pm [Reply]

    Regarding Luann, if that’s what passes for “an essay” these days, no wonder my college students freaked out so much at the thought of one that was 2-3 pages long.

    I’m just baffled by the whole thing. Why would you assign something like that? What pedagogical purpose would it serve? I could see it being about creativity, or about practicing one’s handwriting, but those are things that would be more appropriate for elementary school students (and very young ones at that), not high schoolers. And, as someone else here has noted, why would the teacher do the assignment? Was he required to teach this by some out of touch educational board? Is this a dream? And do they even still teach cursive these days? Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to have these students typing it up on a computer?

    There is so much FAIL here that I could write an essay just on that.

  125. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:48 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#125): And yes, I know that the correct and concise answer is “Greg Evans is an out of touch moron” but where’s the fun in that?

  126. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:49 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#125): Might we add all of them sitting elbow to elbow at what appears to be a counter facing away from the blackboard?

  127. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:56 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#61):

    FG – Man, and after he saved you from freezing to death and everything. Dick move, Blaze.

    There are a lot of initials of strips that confound me. Every time I see “FG” commented on, I think,

    Oh yeah, that must be “Family Guy”. Nah. Is it “Funky Ginkerbean”? “Family Gerkin”? Then I freaking give up.

    I don’t need to know, despite being curious that there is a character in it named Blaze.

  128. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 6:59 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#128):

    Freankin’ Gadzooks!

    And that quickly, as I began reading this in reverse order, the answer is revealed,
    @commodorejohn (#118): , as being “Flash Gordon”!

    //which somehow never dawned on me. (not that that is brutal or anything.)

  129. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:01 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#128): I’m with you. The best I could come up with was Fil Gorp.

  130. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:01 pm [Reply]

  131. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:04 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous Shrug, Speaker to Spam (#93):

    Aw Yeah!

    A while ago, I cracked open a Can of Dream o’ Mushrooms and just slurrrr… I just sluuuuurrrrrrrpppppppp…whoa! Gotta go!

    There’s spiders everywhere!

    //Where’s Clown-9 when I need him and his comically oversized Flit! Squirter ???

  132. Elk Meadow
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:05 pm [Reply]

    PV: I do like how the fashions have upgraded, what with Red Hood (past and present) and the Starry Night Bathrobe Dude.

  133. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:05 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#127): Good catch.

    Is there anything about this which isn’t ridiculous?

  134. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:11 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#118): You’re really good at that announcer voice! Brought the show back, you did.

    Luann puts me in mind of Joe Piscopo as David Letterman (on SNL), showing “a movie by my dog, Bob.” The POV would appear to be that of an excited quadruped. “Dave” says they’re going for a ride in the car!!! The camera hops into the car, looks over at “Dave,” then hangs out the window!!! A telephone pole comes up, fills the screen. Movie’s over.

  135. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:21 pm [Reply]

    In a Very Special ™ Sunday version of Family Gerkin

    Dill just got home. He sets his briefcase down as he takes off his hat.
    He shouts, “Pickles, I’m home!”

    Pickles, wearing an apron and drying off a plate asks, “What did the doctor say?”

    Dill says, “I need to stop drinking vinegar.”
    Pickles, “Oh Dear! How long do you have to live?”

    Four short, squat Gerkins come bounding into the kitchen, “Daddy! You’re home!”

    As the kids hug him and Dill is looking up to his teary-eyed wife he says, “After dinner, just put me in the deep freezer so I can preserve this memory!”

    //oh yeah. one minor detail: it is a family of anthropomorphic pickles!
    i know. it is weird! and it would be more acceptable drawn. i know. but, keep in mind I had some of that Dream o’ Mushrooms soup!
    hmm, hmm Whoa!

  136. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:30 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#136): Snif. I LOVE you guys.

  137. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:33 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#134): Well, even though it’s stupid he’s doing his own assignment, the sentiments expressed by the teacher are spot on, considering his students.

  138. Sequitur
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:34 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Greg Evans has admitted he is having trouble writing this strip anymore. His mind is elsewhere. I think he’s purposely throwing soft balls just to see how far the ‘Mudgeons can hit ‘em out of the park. You know, batting practice.

    I’d like to see some bats :[ing practice right about now.

    @tallyHO (#136): Now that’s funny!

  139. This Guy
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:34 pm [Reply]

    Frazz: Ah, how kind of the Glorious Running Master Race to condescend to wearing identifying t-shirts so as not to alarm the sedentary masses. ALL GLORY TO THE RUNNERS!

    @seismic-2 (#35): And the opening of Anna Karenina: “Crappy comic strips are all alike…”

  140. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:42 pm [Reply]

    @This Guy (#140): You can’t say enough bad things about Frazz to suit me.

  141. Liam
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:50 pm [Reply]

    MW-With the limited number of men in Santa Royale Dawn is hoping to meet one while volunteering at the hospital.

    MW 2-”Losing an arm does seem pretty traumatic but I was on a sinking cruise ship recently and my nearly dying trumps your losing a limb.”

    Slylock Fox-That is the skeleton of the great beast Marmaduke.

  142. Uncle Lumpy
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:59 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#50):

    … many of those spiders are only visible to excessive meth users. Particularly the little red ones.

    Peter Parker is king of the little-read spiders.

  143. Evan
    September 16th, 2012 at 7:59 pm [Reply]

    Dawns little pep talk certainly did a fine job of transforming the chipper, hopeful young man of panel 5 into the dour and depressed lump in panel 8.

  144. Sequitur
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:03 pm [Reply]

    Cow and Boy: American football. Gotta love it.

    // There’s a cow. There’s a boy. There’s a cow and a boy. Great comedy value!

  145. Ned Ryerson
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:07 pm [Reply]

    Luann just wants to lick her own balls.

  146. Chris Smigliano
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:10 pm [Reply]

    Hi and Lois- There it is, kids, the moral lesson of the day- school is good for you, kids don’t know how good they have it..SURE, if it wasn’t for peer warfare, bullying, lack of funds, overworked teachers, and every political fundamentalist trying to determine what you should be learning..did i say learning? Maybe more like INDOCTRINATION..I mean actually LEARNING something would require aspects like DEBATE, and TOLERANCE, and DIFFERING OPINIONS, which does NOT go with the agenda.. which is to teach kids to unquestioningly and passively follow the rules.. you see in the news what happens every time a kid acts independently..suspension at least, expulsion at most, Strips with Gags based on these, are basically meant to placate the older reader, whose idea of the world is still rooted in old black-and-white movies like IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, full of simplistic answers and happy endings that won’t make you choke on your Metamucil..Basically, GOD, Trixie is gonna get the SWOT beaten out of her once reality sets in!

  147. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    MW: Sweet Jesus, is Dawn going to be the central figure in Moy’s remake of “Henry and June”? Please tell me that Ian will have no part in it!

    MT: Sorta mean making fun of Spider-Man like that, Mark.

    SFx: Slylock has never heard of fencing and assumes that burglars only steal stuff for their own personal use. Methinks it’s time to go back to sleuthing school.

    Luann: Bernice and Gunther have switched answers. Also she erased “with its penis hanging out” from his bookworm description.

    WofI: Glad to know that when the state practices arbitrary detainment and torture, everyone comes out a winner.

    S-M: You’re making a big assumption that Spidey was the old champion, brother.

    DtM: Mr. Wilson is also high and outside, since he just got his Percocet scrip filled.

    FC: At first I was dismayed that PJ’s Asian friend had to be reading a picture book called “Tales from the Far East”, just to drive it home. To be fair, though, maybe Jef Keane has a rightful distrust of the coloring gnomes.

    HtH: Wait, raiding weaker and/or unprepared countries and taking their loot was something Vikings did for self-respect? Come to think of it, it probably did help in that regard.

    Marvin: Vile and self satisfied. Yup, this is Marvin all right.

    DT: Yeah well, you’ll have to reverse-engineer the bullet Dick is gonna put in your flat skull first.

    M-Dawg: The Winslows’ neighbor has the superpower of being able to render subtext as text.

  148. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:17 pm [Reply]

    @BigTed (#117): Well, it’s sort of been shown before that Knute’s gender identity is a fluid thing.

  149. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:23 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#115): Wait, they’re all sentence fragments except for Crystal’s work.

    That’s what I thought, too (#6). But actually Crystal and Knut wrote complete sentences. And I’m impressed they can spell correctly. It’s restored my faith in kids these days!

  150. Amanda Kate
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:27 pm [Reply]

    I guess Luann’s school is teaching kids that an essay can be only one sentence long. That explains so much about the American school system.

  151. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:28 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#147): Please tell me that Ian will have no part in it!

    Ian probably has a small part.

  152. There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:34 pm [Reply]

    @Ned Ryerson (#145): Luann just wants to lick her own balls.

    Yeah, she sure didn’t get to lick Quill’s.

  153. Liam
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:50 pm [Reply]

    Luann-”A unicorn because they are as fake as me. I mean because they are as beautiful as me.”

  154. Jane
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:50 pm [Reply]

    @He Brought Queenie Baby Jesus (#48): So glad I wasn’t the only one troubled by the racist undertones there.

  155. seismic-2
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:52 pm [Reply]

    MW, final panel: Based on his facial expression, I assume Jim has a blue blob-shaped alien parasite attached to the back of his skull that is sucking his brain dry, just like the guy in scrubs at the other table.

  156. Uncle Lumpy
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:53 pm [Reply]

    @Evan (#143):

    Dawns little pep talk certainly did a fine job of transforming the chipper, hopeful young man … into the dour and depressed lump ….

    Tell me about it. Life is brutal.

  157. un malpaso
    September 16th, 2012 at 8:53 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worth’s Universe has a lot in common with a cruise ship. Both are places where bizarre versions of the human species interact awkwardly with each other, clumsily attempting to perform social rituals of grace and etiquette which are intended to place a mask over the sloppy bulk of brute reality. Also, there’s the buffet-style cuisine.

  158. greghousesgf
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:00 pm [Reply]

    H & L–Ha! what do babies know?
    Luann– maybe she was Crow T. Robot?

  159. Faoladh
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:01 pm [Reply]

    Knute has decided to come out as transgendered, which may or may not affect his relationship with Crystal. These sorts of difficult situations can be… oh, who am I kidding? No one cares about what happens in Luann.

  160. Baka Gaijin
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:02 pm [Reply]

    @Alfred E. Neuman (#64) on Mary Worth: COTW contender.

    @debussy fields (#67): Ditto.

    @Poteet (#115): A black crow. Duh. A black crow who picks up paper along the road and lords her good works over her friend crows.

  161. Da Coconino Kid
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:04 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#112):

    Though if Gunther ever meets up with a lion, I hope the lion will quickly decide to disembowel him.

    Though if Knute ever meets up with Milla Jovovich, I hope Milla Jovovich will quickly decide to disembowel him.

    Hey, I think you’re on to something here!

    Though if Luann ever meets up with a dog with his head out a car window, I hope the dog with his head out a car window will quickly decide to disembowel her…

    Yeahhhhhhhhh…

  162. commodorejohn
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:06 pm [Reply]

    @Amanda Kate (#150): No, no, no! In the American school system, essays are five paragraphs, no more, no less! You have to have a thesis/introduction, three main points, and a summary/closing! IT IS APE LAW!

  163. HAnzMFG
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:11 pm [Reply]

    The most decisive creature Gunther can think of, being a shy and indecisive guy himself, is a lion? Because when I think of a lion (male at least), I imagine a lazy, dickish, and egocentric but not at all “decisive” animal. More decisive than a sea anemone I guess.

  164. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:12 pm [Reply]

    DtM – I think it’s simply horrible that the Mitchell family must endure those awul psoriasis outbreaks every Sunday.

  165. Peanut Gallery
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:16 pm [Reply]

    MW – “I’ve passed through a gate of no return…” So that’s how it happened! Those full-height subway turnstiles’ll rip your arm right off.

    RMMD – “Good girl! Here’s a Scooby Snack!”

    SFx – Yes, of course dinosaur skeletons come out of the ground in one long piece just like a string of paper dolls. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  166. Calico
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:17 pm [Reply]

    @rumpled tulip (#46):
    So, June’s kid has done it again! I admire her premature mindfuck skills, even though I generally can’t stand the little vermin.

  167. Calico
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:18 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#164):
    That, or Rosacea.

  168. Poteet
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:29 pm [Reply]

    @Red Bull (#116): *can’t stop laughing*

  169. Bud
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:30 pm [Reply]

    “I’m sorry to hear about your arm. I lost my right thumb while eating this sandwich.”

  170. Chaze
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:32 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#165): Good catch on that lame line Jim uttered. With all of the nonsense associated with Mary Worth, that little gem had gone pretty much unnoticed.

    “I’ve passed through a gate of no return, so to speak.”

    Did you leave your arm behind and now you can’t go back for it? So to speak, of course.

  171. demoncat
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:53 pm [Reply]

    mw jims expression is princeless saying oh god no its happen finaly some else has morphed and become a younger version of the old evil mary worth and its my lunch mate dawn. hi and lois scary part is that trixie is predicting exactly what her school life will be since it is forever just a dream unless the strip ages the characters

  172. commodorejohn
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:58 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#106): I agree. I’ve developed at least some degree of discernment with wine since my brother married (my sister-in-law coming from a slightly more “refined” family – though they’re great folks and not in the least bit stuck-up.) I can tell good coffee from bad just by sniffing the grounds. But for the life of me, I’ve never been able to “get” tea. It’s just vaguely plant-flavored water…

  173. Walker of Dog
    September 16th, 2012 at 9:59 pm [Reply]

    FC: Thel is a Mayan? I did not know that.

    FW: Come on, sag wagon…

    RMMD: “We’re in first class? But that means … we’re using commercial aviation!

    A3G: Greg: “Lu Ann, how about a tour of the city?”
    Lu Ann: “What makes you think I could find my way around the city – my decades of residence?”
    Margo: “There’s something about Greg that pushes all my buttons… or at least all my pierced buttons.”

  174. Sgt. Stoned
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:04 pm [Reply]

    MW: Dawn and Jim have exchanged, like, three sentences and already he is her “new friend”.

    MT: Hey, Mark, spiders ARE insects, you twit!

    H&L: Tolstoy in kindergarten–”Finnegans Wake” by third grade.

  175. seismic-2
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:16 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#172): Lapsang Souchong is to tea what an Islay single-malt Scotch is to hooch. Granted, the almost smell-it-from-across-the-room smokey taste is not exactly, um, everyone’s cup of tea, but in any case it certainly shows that tea has more than single flavor.

  176. Vince M
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:26 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Geez, this last week’s “Peanuts” storyline had *grade-school* age Charlie Brown getting flack for writing a 13-word long essay…

  177. Walker of Dog
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:29 pm [Reply]

    GT: Busted, Busty, and Sassy As All Git-Out: The Molly Ivins Story

    MW: Mr. Giella has begun composing his artwork using Colorforms. I for one praise his experimentation in multimedia collage, and I’m sure that more practice will help him avoid minor mistakes, such as the one we saw today when he forgot to remove his reminder arrow to “place Generic Blond Man Head here”.

    MT: No wonder Cherry looks so pissed off – she was just about to receive a sperm packet from that spider when Mark blundered onto the scene. Mark wouldn’t praise “our staunchest allies” quite so much if he knew about humanity’s future confrontation with the Spider-People (Spider-Man not included).

    Plug: Ugh, we get it already. Pluggers are gassy.

  178. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:43 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#172): But for the life of me, I’ve never been able to “get” tea. It’s just vaguely plant-flavored water…

    Lapsangsuchong.

    // It will change your life.

  179. FOOBed no more
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:44 pm [Reply]

    @Poor Thompson (#71): I think she’s always been depicted as left-handed, or at least the last 10 years or so anyway.

  180. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:45 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#175): Oops. I see you were there already. Great minds etc. but some are quicker.

  181. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:47 pm [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#80): re MW: Well excuuuuuuuuuuse him!

  182. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:50 pm [Reply]

    @Walker of Dog (#177):

    I didn’t bother reading the “P” family of Sunday Strips.

    So after reading this:
    “Plug: Ugh, we get it already. Pluggers are gassy.”

    I’m left believing the gagline was:

    Pluggers discovered Energy Independence years ago. They are just reluctant to try and harness it.

  183. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:53 pm [Reply]

    @Sgt. Stoned (#174): Hey, Mark, spiders ARE insects…

    No, not according to generally accepted taxonomy. Both are spiders and insects are arthropods, but they are in different subphylums.

    You can look it up.

  184. Mike Hock
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:54 pm [Reply]

    “Most of us flinch at the sight of them.”

    Why is Mark looking directly at Cherry as he says this? Freudian error?

  185. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 16th, 2012 at 10:56 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#183): “Both spiders and insects are arthropods” — try that again.

  186. MustacheEmperor
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:03 pm [Reply]

    I was thinking the construction workers were saying something more like
    “Oh no! If the eggheads find out about this we’ll never get to build the plant here! Quick! Put it back and move a few feet over!”

  187. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:05 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#172):

    Now, I am no tea aficionado by any means. I’m just a man who cherishes remaining hydrated. I’ll drink just about anything that qualifies as potable.

    But, there’s all kinds of teas. From what little I know there’s probably all kinds of flavors, too.

    It sounds like you might be putting a bit too much stock in someone else’s taste in teas. No offense, but, I’m being serious. There are hearty teas that are more like what Stout beer is to Budweiser; there’s fruity teas and god knows how many other flavor added teas. But, sometimes peppermint, mint or some of the floral teas are tasty. They don’t mix well with booze….or do they?

    There is the hot tottie. That’s a little bit too la dee da for me. (and yes, I’d utter that aloud, too; seriously, it is way too close to “hoity-toity “.)

    But, if I had to give advice it would be this:

    For god sakes, man! There’s no reason to become a tea snob. As lame as Lipton’s “Orange Pekoe” might seem it is a hot beverage when hot is good and a cold beverage when hot is oppressive (like The Man).

    //goodgravy. that’s the longest sorta serious thing I’ve ever typed here. And, it is about tea. Someone point me to the nearest comic strip featuring a psychiatrist lead character. Oh. The New Yorker has dibs on those kinds of comics? Gotcha. I’ll get around to it later, I suppose.

  188. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:14 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#187): We visited a tea shop in Guangzhou. My first interest was the neat teapots (see pix), but I also thought the varieties of tea were interesting — visually, I mean. My favorite one I called Brussels Sprouts tea, because of its appearance (see pix).

  189. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:15 pm [Reply]

    Churchy LaFemme: “Tell you what. I’ll whisper you back the name of the secret ingrediment! Hello, Uncle Baldwin. Are you listenin’? It’s… Dirt. D like in Dirt. I like in Dirt. R like in Dirt. T like in Orange Pekoe.”

  190. This Guy
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:17 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#187): Lemon/hibiscus tea with honey and bourbon is a delightful cold remedy.

  191. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:18 pm [Reply]

    @There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm (#151):

    Ian probably has a small part.

    Toeby? What say you, domesticated artiste?

  192. This Guy
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:25 pm [Reply]

    FC: Thelma Keane doesn’t worry about the future of this country. As long as she has her little brood of organ farms, it’s all the same to her.

  193. commodorejohn
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:32 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#175): Well, I may or may not like it, but it certainly sounds more worth drinking than the watery cups of sad I’ve subjected myself to in trying to figure out why people like the stuff…

  194. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:48 pm [Reply]

    @This Guy (#190):

    I could see how that might cure the common cold.

    Some acids, some booze. forals. honey for the throat. honey has a bunch of compounds in it that are good for you.

    Booze.

    I’ll keep it in mind.

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#188):

    That’s cool.

    I guess where I am coming from is tea is tea. I doubt I’ve ever had bad tea. Which is odd because I use the phrase “weak tea” in describing unpersuasive arguments or when discussing politics.

    It bears stating that I have no elaborate (or simple enough for some) system for brewing tea. No magic Disco ball-like pac man necklace to put tea in for brewing. no tea pots. (definitely nothing as fancy as that picture. It looks like part of a choo-choo train designed by Dr. Suess.) Tea bags, with strings or without.

    But, tea is tea. The bonus is certain that kinds are probably good for you.

  195. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:56 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#193):

    “watery cups of sad”

    No one should be subjected to such torture. If I ever march in a protest of something, I’m carrying a placard that says: “End Watery Cups of Sad!” (granted, that will probably be a protest against something I probably like, but, I will defend my plea with conviction and warm, liquid-fire in my belly.)*

    Look at that “recipe” that This Guy shared.

    You can add something to it. (or just leave out the tea.) Is this advisable at for the workplace? It depends upon the workplace.

    *ironic street protests. If you are bored…and in Rome…do as the Romans.

  196. tallyHO
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:59 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#194):

    Gak!

    I meant to spell: florals, like flowers.

    Probably should add some tea to my booze.

    Carry on.

  197. seismic-2
    September 16th, 2012 at 11:59 pm [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#193): Irish Breakfast tea is so much stronger than Orange Pekoe that it’s hard to categorize them as being the same kind of drink. And Lapsang Suchong (which was Winston Churchill’s favorite) is the sort of thing that appeals to Cuban cigar smokers, as he was. Earl Grey tea has lots of citrus oil (specifically, Bergamot) that stands out. Most American tea is Orange Pekoe, largely because it has an appealing flavor when served ice cold. The rest of the world prefers hot tea, so there is much more strong variety in the types that they drink.

  198. mdblanche
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:11 am [Reply]

    MW: I cried because I had no boyfriend until I met a man who had no arm. Then I kept crying because I’m completely self-absorbed.

    MT: How can you just stand there with a stupid grin, blandly spouting trivia about grassy fields, while spiders as big as your face jump out in front of you? You may be reassured that they’re our military allies, but I’m still sleeping with a can of Raid under my pillow.

  199. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:11 am [Reply]

    I remember when Celestial Seasonings was a local Colorado brand. KFML had a great ad with Dusty Drapes (of Dusty Drapes and the Drapers) singing a little cowboy song about Sunrise Orange Peelings, and concluded with the cheery tag line, “There’s eleven of ‘em — one for every day of the week.”

  200. CanuckDownSouth
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:14 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#193): I’ll second that Irish Breakfast is a good strong tea – I also like pure Yunnan brewed strongly, with milk & sugar. I think Canada leans a little more on the English Breakfast side, although it’s been so long since I’ve had Red Rose that I’m not sure :-) (A tea shop can be nice to try different varietals – one sister worked in one for a while, hence my sampling and finding that I like one of the less-obvious ones. They may also have fun flavoured teas, including ones with zing like the Hot Cinnamon [with bark bits] and Chili Chocolate [nibs and bits] I’ve tried.)

    Brewing might be key to avoid weak cups of sad: I was taught rolling boil and 5 minutes.

  201. Brian
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:16 am [Reply]

    Wish I had a dollar for every time I heard the phrase “an epigram from Anaïs Nin surely portends incipient sexytimes”…

  202. Genghis Jhan
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:26 am [Reply]

    MT: “MOST of us flinch at the sight of them, except my wife here, whom I married mostly because she can match their steely, unfeeling gaze.”

  203. Rusty
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:42 am [Reply]

    @Chaze (#140): I was hoping somebody had noticed this week’s episode, wherein the author breaks his arm patting himself on the back.

  204. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:12 am [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#119): Yep, I can totally see Crystal the Crow trying to bum out some poor writer in 1537. Or maybe she was a carrion crow in England, cawing at Henry VIII that his infant son wouldn’t live long.

  205. rumpled tulip
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:21 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#172): vaguely plant-flavored water

    That makes me think you’ve been drinking green tea, which I would indeed call a watery cup of sad. If you ever feel like trying tea again (and aficionado though I am, I certainly wouldn’t insist you do) try a box of Twinings Irish or English Breakfast tea. Twinings also makes a Ceylon Orange Pekoe which I think is excellent. I like my tea the British way, with a smallish spoonful of sugar and a splash of milk. That, to me, is a cup of happy!

  206. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:21 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#172): Thanks for inspiring an interesting discussion. “Watery cup of sad” is a spot-on description, in my experience. I drink tea because it’s supposed to be healthy, but for taste, I prefer cider, milk, hot chocolate, grape juice, and just about anything else. If some of the stronger-tea suggestions on this thread end up converting me, I’ll give a brief report someday.

  207. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:30 am [Reply]

    @There have always been Snarkadders at Curmudgeon Farm (#149): Yes, I missed Knut’s complete sentence. Sorry, Knut. I do hope these young people will move on to more sophisticated and subtle essays, maybe about the kinds of microbes they’d be if they were microbes.

  208. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:34 am [Reply]

    MW — I’ll bet he lost his girlfriend. Or his dog. Or his best friend. Or his sweet old mum. Or his mind.

  209. tallyHO
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:35 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#197):

    Oh my god!

    PLOP!

    //just clicked that wikipedia link. it if is green, how the heck can it be an orange!?!

  210. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:36 am [Reply]

    MW — Also, could we please decide ASAP whether Jim has a thin face or a fatter face? If we’re going to have to look at him for a few weeks, it’s time to get the matter settled. Thank you.

  211. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:43 am [Reply]

    MT — Suddenly it’s winter and the perp has an eensy-weensy hand. There’s no story like a MT story. And while I admire Sassy’s verve, it seems to me that in this case, Rusty would have been better off owning a cat. The cat would be safe at home right now, washing itself, and Rusty could continue escaping from the dimwit perps with no doggy hostage to worry about. Not that I’d wish Rusty on any cat. But there probably aren’t any cats in the clip art collection anyway.

  212. nomuse
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:44 am [Reply]

    MW — I LOVE Jim’s expression in the last panel. “Oh, God, now she’s going to talk about some lame experience SHE had. Probably broke a nail or something.”

  213. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:52 am [Reply]

    FW — “Yet it shall be; thou shalt lower to his level day by day,
    What is fine within thee growing coarse to sympathize with clay.

    As the husband is, the wife is: thou art mated with a clown,
    And the grossness of his nature will have weight to drag thee down.”

    Tennyson, you nailed it.

  214. tallyHO
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:52 am [Reply]

    Just got around to reading Mark Trail (yeah. I know. I see it up there. I looked at it earlier.)

    There’s 200 species of jumping spiders “North of Mexico”.

    I don’t know about any of you, but, I’m North of Mexico. Now I expect to …. hey waitasecond! Hold the phone! Shout out to the Cornfield for Cousin Barefoot and ask him to test a theory! When he delivers his results, don’t let him in the house. Give him the once over to see how many spiders are jumping off of him. Pick up the phone, call One-One-Nine….Yup, you are as Bass Ackwards as I thought.
    Just hold on now!

    Where the hell are these jumping spiders? Should I expect to be standing in line at the Fair and look over at a fountain that shouldn’t be there and realign my thinking to see it for what it really is: not water but Synchronized Jumping Spiders enjoying the Fair even more than the regular folk do?

    Waitasecond! Hold the horses because they might start a dancing if you don’t.

    If “The Real Mark Trail” sees this, has there ever been a thorough expose in the Sunday MT on Mexican Jumping Beans? I mean, for the love o’ God. If there’s 200 jumping spiders up here, how is that Mexico just has jumping, bug-filled beans?

    I ask because I’m looking for a solution to make the spiders go vamoose. If Mexican Jumping Beans are the answer, we need to know this. If Mark Trail has any use as a Public Service it has to give us solutions, man! Don’t just scare the bee jesus* out of us.

    *once upon a time, i thought that character would be a laff riot. a bee dressed like jesus. how could anything go wrong with that? what’s not to laff at?

  215. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:06 am [Reply]

    GA — Clovia, see #213.

  216. Anonymous
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:08 am [Reply]

    If you’re going to post horrifying spider pictures, could you maybe give a quick warning before the picture or something? A lot of people (like me) are very arachnophobic… I came here looking to laugh, not be terrified… Stupid Mark Trail… >.<

  217. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:09 am [Reply]

    A3G — I like how the ears have shyly crept out of the hair in Panel Two. No I don’t, actually, it’s creepy.

  218. Poteet
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:26 am [Reply]

    I like jumping spiders and have watched them hunt. They are as impressive on a tiny scale as any lion. The horrifyingly-ugly people in GT, on the other hand, give me nightmares. I want them to be shrunk way down so jumping spiders can eat them.

  219. commodorejohn
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:32 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#197), @rumpled tulip (#205): I dunno. I’ve actually only had green tea the one time – everything else has been different black teas, Earl Grey and English Breakfast included, from a couple different companies. I’ve even tried cutting down on the amount of water, and it still doesn’t compare to a good cup of coffee. It’s basically the same problem I had with beer at first: I have absolutely no idea what the difference between good and bad tea is, and consequently I don’t know if I actually don’t like it, or if I’ve just had crap every single time I’ve tried it…

  220. Droopy Says
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:44 am [Reply]

    The Amazing Spider-Bland: Spiderman is not spoiled. He’s half-baked.

    Creepy Les: WTF? Since when have those two ugly spuds been living wih Les and Lesser? And when did Lesser develop a spine? Have we made a sideways time jump into a parallel universe where Les is pussywhipped by Cayla?

    Pluggers: You’re already a Plugger if you read Southern Living and Better Homes and Gardens.

    Marmaduke: Remembering what happened the last time he went underground, Phil Hitler realizes this cannot turn out well.

    Jugs Parker: Bea, since Boobsy Twins now know that you’ve been cooperating with Bubba, and they know why he stole the camera, it’s safe for you to mention that Bubba knows that they know about the pot farm. Or are you afraid to disrupt the general air of ignorance that surrounds your guests?

  221. Lisa
    September 17th, 2012 at 3:05 am [Reply]

    MW: Jim’s arm grew back?! Dawn is a miracle worker! Or the colorist got confused and drew it back in.

  222. Mr. O'Malley
    September 17th, 2012 at 4:27 am [Reply]

    @Lisa (#221): I presume the colorists don’t speak English so they can’t read the dialog. Or possibly the lettering is done after the coloring, so when the colorists are working the dialog balloons are empty? “The art in this strip just gets worse and worse. Not only is the perspective off, but he’s drawn this character so he looks like he has only one arm. I’ll fix it for him, but just this once, mind you!”

    JP: I wonder if we’re going to see the return of that character from the post office? It’s well-known in northern California that the old established growers intentionally spend their money in the area. They buy their cars from the local car dealer even if they could get a better deal in the city, and so on. So if the sheriff has any ideas about stamping out pot growers he will be met with hostility from the Chamber of Commerce. This is particularly so if the region is having economic problems otherwise.

    This seems like a similar situation. The tourist industry is in decline and fishing lodges are burdened with debt. Bubba is supporting half the county as the most successful businessman in the area. If Sam goes to the law, he is not going to get any cooperation.

    Those cryptic warnings in the post office, will they reappear? Has the lucrative contract been purloined from the post and held for ransom?

    Why not just ask Bubba to email him the picture of the fish?

    This is a plot that would have made more sense with a film camera, since you can’t delete an individual picture from a film.

  223. Mr. O'Malley
    September 17th, 2012 at 4:40 am [Reply]

    I could see Avery being into a retro hobby like film photography, so the plot could really work with that.

    I’ve been looking for a 1970s rangefinder and it seems as though prices have really gone up, compared to a few years ago when something like an Olympus 35-SP was going for $40 or so, or so they say on the old blogs. Film is hip again and the old cameras are becoming collector’s items.

  224. Droopy Says
    September 17th, 2012 at 5:19 am [Reply]

    @Mr. O’Malley (#222): At some point in living memory, Avery said that he trusted Sam with his life. If JP uses foreshadowing, then Sam might be called on to do something. (Or maybe Avery just had a realistic moment in which he realized he can’t take care of himself.)

  225. Droopy Says
    September 17th, 2012 at 5:24 am [Reply]

    Family Circus: “Capitalism? But I hafta do ‘rithmetic, so we live in a total-itarian state!”

  226. Clint Brawny
    September 17th, 2012 at 6:07 am [Reply]

    When is Spider-Man going to start winning again? Can’t beat this clown, totally ineffective against Loki, had random non-super villains beaten only by themselves or their own assistants rather than him (Spider-Man).

  227. boconn
    September 17th, 2012 at 6:09 am [Reply]

    Looks like Dawn stole that sammitch off of Jim’s tray. Panel needs a Wilbur floating head voice over: “You have learned your lessons well Grasshopper!”

  228. seismic-2
    September 17th, 2012 at 6:41 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#219): Again, you try both Irish (not English) Breakfast teas but especially Lapsang Souchong tea before dismissing it entirely. Even bad teas of those types at least have a distinctive flavor. That may help you decide whether you do, or don’t, just like tea. (Personally, I like Scottish Breakfast tea every morning, since it has a very nice malty taste.)

  229. gleeb
    September 17th, 2012 at 6:51 am [Reply]

    Dick: The director of the aquarium in Chicago has arrest powers?

    ‘bean: You should have married into Sally Forth’s family, Cayha.

    Phantom: And here they wasted time dragging out the long-distance talking drum.

  230. CanuckDownSouth
    September 17th, 2012 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    MW: Who does the inking on these things? Because if it’s the artist, we’re entering Shulock/Bolle script/art cold war territory. One-armed shadows do not work that way!

  231. Liam
    September 17th, 2012 at 8:25 am [Reply]

    What is going on with comics that are run through Comics Kingdom? They are repeating all the comics from Saturday. I go to them to read the comics that my newspaper doesn’t carry.

  232. Downpuppy
    September 17th, 2012 at 8:25 am [Reply]

    WaPo & Seattle PI are both showing Saturday’s comics today.

    WTF?

  233. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    September 17th, 2012 at 8:33 am [Reply]

    I know the plots move slowly, but I’m still pretty sure that today’s strips are the exact same as Saturday’s. Except for Luann, which seems to have actually regressed by a few decades.

  234. Nehemiah Scudder
    September 17th, 2012 at 8:43 am [Reply]

    @commodorejohn (#219): Tea aficionados oft look upon me aghast, trembling with horror, when I tell them how I prepare my morning cup, or two.

    Place a teabag of orange pekoe (Lipton is fine, but I generally use the cheapest supermarket generic black tea) in a coffee mug with cold water. Put in microwave for 1 1/5 to two minutes, until it just starts to boil over. Let stand for about three minutes, remove teabag, carefully squeezing excess liquid from the teabag into the cup. The resulting brew is very dark, strong, and bitter. Add sugar, lemon or milk, to taste. This is no tea for weaklings.

    // In the summer I pour it over ice: cold, strong, dark, and bitter, (just the way I like my women, too).

  235. TheSilentG
    September 17th, 2012 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    At first I was going to speculate that Jim’s terribly downtrodden look in the last panel of Mary Worth should be taken to mean that he’s unimpressed with Dawn’s self-centered attitude in the face of his recent armlessness, but thinking on it, he’s probably just sad because he’s lost his favourite hand with which to masturbate. That’s a look that says “I miss Lady Lefty…” if ever I saw one.

    Also, is it just me, or does Mountview Hospital look exactly like the Charterstone Condominium?

  236. Erin
    September 17th, 2012 at 1:35 pm [Reply]

    Hey, wait a minute…MT has totally run a “spiders are our allies” strip before. http://joshreads.com/?p=9743

  237. Jumbo37364
    September 17th, 2012 at 2:03 pm [Reply]

    Luann: It’s a trick question, humans are animals.

  238. Jeff Soesbe
    September 17th, 2012 at 4:31 pm [Reply]

    I believe the Anais Nin quote was also used as a tag line for FIFTY SHADES OF GREY. Or BORAT. One of the two.

    Either way we can hope that Mary Worth will get a LOT more interesting.

    But, probably not.

    - yeff

  239. Kirk
    September 17th, 2012 at 5:12 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Humans ARE animals.

  240. Morgan Wick
    September 17th, 2012 at 10:11 pm [Reply]

    “The eyes of the jumping spider are among the best in invertebrate animals, enabling them to see the slightest movement.”

    Unless they happen to be named Peter Parker, of course.

  241. David Foster Wodehouse
    September 18th, 2012 at 8:03 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail and Luann are weirdly complementary today, but while Mark rallies his troops against the insect legions, Bernice allies with them in order to erase Russian literature from existence. Now if only a swarm of giant spiders attacked Pitts High School in retaliation for this treachery….

  242. mitchellbravo
    September 18th, 2012 at 11:52 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: I like to interpret the arrow pointing at Jim’s head as reminiscent of TDIET’s “The Urge,” because look at that that face right now- *THE URGE to get the heck out of this conversation!*

  243. Notebooked
    September 19th, 2012 at 1:50 pm [Reply]

    Oh dear god, look at Jim’s face in the last panel. Even the composition of the panel is trying to break it to Dawn that what she’s saying is stupid. The drooping eyebrows and wobbling lips of Jim! The arrow on the wall behind him, as if to say “Look at this face. Take a good look. Seriously, Dawn, do you want to progress with your story? Your story that will finish with ‘but I’m alright now’?”

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