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Mark’s idyll

Mark Trail, 11/12/12

It seemed so natural, right from the start. The kindly old man who taught him the island’s secrets. The boy, normally proportioned, pre-orphaned and adoption-ready — who made no demands and cared nothing for fishing, content to play in the sand. The young widow, Ava, fit and eager like Cherry when they were new in love, a spark of interest in her soft eyes smoldering slowly into something more. And Andy, his rock. No place could be home without Andy. But this place — this could be home. Had always been his home.

Cherry filled her days making coffee and pancakes. Bill’s calls, full of wild excuses about a ransom no one ever expected to be paid, slowed and then stopped, to their mutual relief. But she watched in growing horror as Rusty huddled dead-eyed in the shack he built near the rotting pier, tying ever more garish and disturbing trout flies that he never used, wouldn’t sell, and finally grew too ashamed even to show her.

They met again, once — even touched. Mark on a supply run from the small island, Cherry on a desperate vacation from Doc’s endless gibbering and Rusty’s nightlong howls, their hands brushed reaching for the store’s last box of Bisquick. Cherry gasped as the caress of ruined, sinew-knotted knuckles resurrected longings she thought had been buried years before. Their eyes met, but Mark’s saw only an old woman, face frozen into a mask of bitterness and resignation. He let her keep the box out of pity, and never thought of her again.

The boy tried to run Otto’s kidnapping operation but had no head for the business side. The small island filled with unclaimed hostages, taxing the feeble aquifer — and the ocean only rose. At last one day, when the typhoid had claimed Ava and the boy sat in jail from a ransom sting, Mark brought Andy to the remaining boat and set sail for the mainland. He would keep them alive by fishing — surely a Man of Nature could remember how.

Dick Tracy, 11/12/12

Walt Wallet is at least one hundred and twelve years old, but despite a failed attempt to send him to the Old Comics Home in 2006, Gasoline Alley just can’t seem to pull the trigger on the old coot. So they’re outsourcing the job to Dick Tracy, the most efficient killing machine on Planet Earth. ‘Bye, Walt.

Slylock Fox, 11/12/12

With Mark on extended leave, the King brings in a couple temps to manage poacher-catching. Since Slylock knows only one human, expect Slick Smitty to be hauled off to jail any minute on some far-fetched pretext: “There are no taxis to Liberty Island!” “You ate the vegetables while standing in the garden!” “Only the real mouse has a tail!” “Anteaters don’t have teeth!” “Your earrings are cold!”

Is anybody else troubled by what “poaching” might mean in a kingdom populated exclusively by animals? I believe the rhino has given the matter some thought.

Say, I don’t see a ring on King Dandy Lion’s fingertoe — could he and Princess Pussycat be planning a merger of the realms once Slylock has exterminated the remaining humans? I hear wedding bells! Oh, wait — those are death knells. Catchy tune, though.

– Uncle Lumpy

125 responses to “Mark’s idyll”

  1. bunivasal
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:52 am [Reply]

    I’d like to think that Dick Tracy, having doffed his trademark yellow trenchcoat and now his stylish black suitcoat, will keep going, stripping off his tie, dress shirt, undershirt…

    And every time, he’ll manage to flash the gun in the shoulder holster, even though it’s somehow under the next layer!

  2. Uncle Lumpy
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:58 am [Reply]

    @bunivasal (#1):

    Dick nude is Dick armed.

  3. Droopy Says
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:04 am [Reply]

    9CL: Good news, Solange is back and she has no comment.

    Spiderbland: “Or better yet, I’ll mop the floor with you, since that good-for-nothing janitor vanished right before you showed up!”

    Flunky Whatsit: Yeah, send the Dippy Duo to the robot show. Maybe the AJGLU 3000 booth can dispense a higher grade of humor.

    Jugs Parker: Are Bea’s hips getting slimmer?

    Family Circus: Billy must be confused by the ever-changing numbers on his jersey. Or does this represent a lingering sibling rivalry, as Artist Brother Jeffy still wishes he could trade away his older brother?

    Mock Trail: What with all the close-to-nature frolicking, and the obvious god health and comfort of the locals, you wonder why they need any money, much less two million dollars.

    Pluggers: Pluggers are always astonished that anyone would put them on a mailing list.

  4. Farley's Revenge
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:12 am [Reply]

    I am beyond grateful that the Dick Tracy artist stopped at the suit jacket opening rather than drawing the full on nude Dick with the little Dick hanging out for all to see. OTOH, such a sight would probably have Walt keeling over and no longer cluttering up the comic landscape.

  5. Dale
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:49 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#3):


    We know they’re short on potable water. A few days ago (reader time) I suggested that the Big Island Thugs (rock band or soccer team?) pocketed the money for the little people’s desalinization plant.

    Mark is delusional. He thinks he’s the star of a movie and therefore can’t be hurt. I figure this is day 2 of captivity, 0 being the day he was taken. When it gets closer to 7 and the locals start talking about sending body parts, what happens?

  6. Alice
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:02 am [Reply]

    Luann: Goddamn it, Gunther, grow some ba–oh, who am I kidding. Sometime after Brad and Toni got together, this comic strip went into permanent “No arc must ever, EVER be resolved” mode.

  7. Inkwell
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:06 am [Reply]

    I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but you recaptured that sad, longing vibe from Josh’s old post In search of lost office supplies.

    You two can write better fan fiction in a single blog post than I can in 18 drafts.

  8. Droopy Says
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:22 am [Reply]

    @Dale (#5): I’m waiting to see if Trail becomes so enchanted with the locals that he leads them in a revolution. I’m sure Elrod has enough clip art to paste Trail into an olive drab hat and a Castroite beard. The symbol of the revolution will, of course, be a raised Fist o’ Justice.

  9. tallyHO
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:59 am [Reply]

    Awww. It ain’t even my birthday!

    You captured some nuance in three pretty good strips.
    Mark’s second life. What about Kelly Welly though? Hm. Maybe she can still be his continental mistress. If Mark needs to contact her, hopefully he has a choice between sending her a message via Frisbee or perhaps by way of boomerang. Stranger things have happened, dear reader. You’ll find stranger things should you choose to read on. muhhhhaahahaha.

    A crossover comic! Now we’re on to something! If Mistopher Trendy starts shimmying about then I will proclaim Dick Tracy: The Greatest (sorry, Cassius Clay). Seriously, though, I’m expecting Tracy to shoot an apple off his head. That’ll be the excuse he uses as he assists Walt’s “dying wishes.”

    And, A Good Ol’ Monday Slylock Fox Hunt.
    Yes, howdy! While the “mystery” is pretty easy (man isn’t the deadliest game, you know, if you have a Lion, Fox, Rhino and a Nosey Mouse on your side). They’ll find the hunters. After all, how dangerous can three men with guns be to a Motley Crew such as the Anti-Poaching Pack? What do they have at most, 3 shots, maybe six? Surely, Shylock has a bullet proof vest on under his suit. I could also see Max using his bowler as a weapon, a la, Oddjob.

    Finally…the fur de resistance!
    Haha. Rhino horns. Always with the Rhino hor…waitasecond. Hold the horses. Hug ‘em tight, too. Tell ‘em you love ‘em (but not that way) then go get a canteen’s worth of water (cuz the horses aint’ gonna get it for ya); bring it back to the horses so ya can grab your flask and your tin cup; saddle down, don’t get too dis-stirruped; mix yourself some scotch and a bit of water, sip until you feel you are ready to…Oh, fiddlesticks! I’ll just cut to the chase…

    Rhino horns? @tallyHO (#52):
    I do declare! Whatever on earth could poachers want with rhino horns?
    Now it also might be worth considering that King Ding Dong Dandy Lion had better hold onto his crown by putting those opposable thumbs to good use.

  10. Noel Schornhorst
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:58 am [Reply]

    I’m afraid there’s no denyin’
    That King Dandy Lion,
    Those poachers better serve,
    Or once Slylock’s finished greetin’
    The humans will all be eaten
    And Max is an insect perv.

  11. LP2004
    November 12th, 2012 at 5:25 am [Reply]

    MT: Editorbillellis staggers onto the beach, a little light-headed after selling four units of his own blood to raise the last of the ransom.

    “Here it is, Mark… All of it… Two million dollars… Now you can come home…”

    “Um… Two million? Oh, I’m sure they said ten million. Yes, that’s it. Ten million dollars. So you’ll just have to go back and find the rest. And Otto says you’d better have it all no later than November 2025.”

  12. Liam
    November 12th, 2012 at 6:04 am [Reply]

    Love Is-Dude, the acid just kicked in.

    MT-Oh my god! Look at the way Mark is being tortured. These kidnappers are brutal people and deserve the punchings Mark will be giving them later on.

    JP-Listen to Avery. He has a plan to get rid of some of this nature that he really loves for a solar farm.

    A3G-Haven’t you heard, Greg? Margo is no longer in the publicity business. Looks like you are going to have to find a new publicist.

  13. The Divine O'F
    November 12th, 2012 at 6:45 am [Reply]

    CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE©: Uncle Lumpy, your tale of the End of Mark Trail is scrumptious. Really, among your best work evah. And thank you for mentioning the latest alarming development in Dick Tracy. Was it really six years ago that we visited the Old Comics Home?

  14. gleeb
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:00 am [Reply]

    Slylock: The king calls himself Dandy, but where’s the exaggerated fashion sense and the air of bored contempt?

    Barney Google: Elviney hates all the prep work that goes into puppy pie, although it is Lukey’s favorite dish.

    ‘bean: Owen the idiot has clearly never heard of the technical marvel that is soap, so the surprise is understandable.

  15. KreatureFeatures
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:27 am [Reply]

    Nice work Lump.

  16. CanuckDownSouth
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:28 am [Reply]

    Dawn and Jim are drinking “dry lime sodas” which, given the odd sealed cylinder shape and thin straws, is what the aliens populating Mary Worth call WD-40 spray.

  17. The Modesto Kid
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:51 am [Reply]

    This is the best entry to date in the Comics Curmudgeon.

  18. KreatureFeatures
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:59 am [Reply]

    FW: Nerds and robots are serious subject matter, so I hope this storyline isn’t infantilized by a hidebound literalist.

  19. hogenmogen
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:02 am [Reply]

    Sly: Max is trying to fry a bug by focusing the sun’s rays. Can’t do it in the shade, moron. Sly isn’t even really trying. He’s holding up his magnifying glass – why, exactly? Maybe it’s a mirror and Sly is a chronic narcissist. That would explain a lot about this strip.

    I imagine that once the terrified looking poachers are rounded up, King Dandy-lion will summarily eat them alive, as is his carnivorous nature.

  20. anty a
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:07 am [Reply]

    Thanks, Uncle Lumpy, for starting my day with bonafide LOLs.

  21. But What Do I Know?
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:14 am [Reply]

    Uncle Lumpy’s story is a thousand times better than Jackelrod’s!

  22. Peanut Gallery
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:19 am [Reply]

    Unca Lumpy, I believe you’ve given us the answer to “What if Mark Trail were written by J.G. Ballard?” Now all we have to do is line up David Cronenberg to direct the movie.

  23. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:28 am [Reply]

    MW – Good thing they are dry lime sodas. They can go to the top of the mesa and drink them! A much better idea than Dawn’s original suggestion that they drink wet daiquiries down by the pier.

    Luann – Poor Rosa. Ever since “Sanchez” had to be “tranferred” to Spain, her choice of potential mates has been pretty limited. You may wonder why she puts up with a refugee from 9CL such as Gunther, but look at the alternatives: Knute, Brad, Ox, TJ, mini-Elvis.

    Fortunately for her, the new foreign exchange student is due to show up any day now, and she plans to be first in line for this one! Luann can have the sloppy seconds this time.

  24. lorne
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:30 am [Reply]

    Tomorrow, he may help a squirrel determine whether a racoon or a lizard stole her nuts, but today Slylock hunts the most dangerous prey: MAN!!!

  25. Chareth Cutestory
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:31 am [Reply]

    Slylock Fox: First, please imagine that Dandy Lion speaks with an effete, Cowardly Lion voice. Now, imagine him explaining to Slylock that this isn’t the usual case of petty theft or vandalism Slylock is used to dealing with–people are trying to murder and mutilate his friend’s corpse. Lastly, imagine him explaining the reason they want Rupert rhino’s horn is so they can sell it to superstitious people who want help with their sex life and erections.

  26. lorne
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:35 am [Reply]

    I love it that when Slylock is solving sad, silly animal crimes he uses the scientific method and knowledge, but when he’s hunting humans, he just has to turn around and look for them.

  27. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:35 am [Reply]

    Frazz: *snurk*

    A&J: saaaaaaa-lute *golf clap*

    HotC: Wookie plushie ftw.

    SBp: *grins*

    Bizarro: 1% humor.

    JP: she says it like Scotch for breakfast is a bad thing.

    Svedish Pluggers? ya sure.

    RwO: gets 6Chixed.

  28. seismic-2
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:35 am [Reply]

    I’m intimidated at the prospect of posting anything at all today, since it would forevermore appear on the same page as Uncle Lumpy’s masterpiece, and that would surely constitute besmirching a work of art on a scale akin to that of spray painting graffiti on the wall of the Louvre that hosts the Mona Lisa.

  29. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    Love Is. . . .when the LSD kicks in.

  30. Little Blue Bicycle
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:44 am [Reply]

    @bunivasal (#1): Dick’s getting naked for Clovia.

  31. Mibbitmaker
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    SFx: With a name like “dandelion”, it’s no wonder he can’t rule a kingdom well enough himself without outside help.

    MT (almost moot given UL’s magnificent opus, but what the hell…):
    Bill Ellis: “I got the ransom money, Mark. You can come back home!”
    Trail: “Sorry, Bill, but I’m staying! This is home now….”

    DT (meta): I was going to complain about this dopey cross-over stunt, how stupid and ridiculous it is. However, given UL’s explanation, I rather like it now.

    DT: “Tracy… Why do I suddenly hear ‘The Stripper” by David Rose and His Orchestra from out of nowhere?!”

  32. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:51 am [Reply]

  33. Johnny Knuckles
    November 12th, 2012 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Epic storytelling, Unc. Much appreciated.

  34. Marc
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    9CL- I have no idea what’s happening, but nobody is talking or humping so I can live with it.

    A3G- Yeah, shut up Greg. You and your yellow bag of generic yellow items are going to have to wait. Can’t you see Margo is in the middle of a sudden and massive growth spurt?

    Mark Trail- I wish I was lucky enough to be kidnapped to a tropical island and given free run of the place. Most people have to pay a lot of money to go a place like this. And even then you still have to play by the resort’s rules and not your own.

    Mary Worth- It’s a good thing that Dawn and Jim bolted from the theater after the first movie. It probably would not have ended well for anybody had they stuck around to watch part two of the double feature, Titanic.

    Funky- Don’t you normally have to be smart to be part of a robotics competition? I mean we know that these two are geeks, but we’ve never been shown anything that would point to them having half a brain between them. I can’t imagine Owen the Idiot trying to build a robot without electrocuting himself or cutting off a finger.

    Luann- Give me a break. Would even the most the anti-social, terrified of women loser on the planet go into a panic attack because a girl who he has been sort of hanging out with asked to hold hands? So all this time Gunther has been “dating” Rosa and they haven’t even progressed to hand holding? And worse yet, she still wants to be within 500 feet of him? These idiots are all sorts of fucked up.

    Cranky- Maybe a UPS truck will skid off the road and run him over.

  35. anon
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    MT: Mark’s Idyll = brilliant!

  36. sporknpork
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Walt Wallet? I thought some poor Who down in Whoville contracted a bad case of the mange.

  37. Black Drazon
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    Re: MT commentary: A thing of beauty, Uncle Lumpy!

  38. Buck Ripsnort
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:31 am [Reply]

    Sly: And the happiest of all is that gleeful . . . bug? Bird? — telling the rhino WHY exactly the poachers want his horn. Judging from Rupert’s expression, this is Too Much Information.

  39. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:34 am [Reply]

    PMP has earwormed me with the Ballad of Pancho and Lefty.

  40. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:35 am [Reply]

    Luann – Gunther is Amos from 9CL without the sexually agressive partner. Reduced to a pile of quivering insecurity by the suggestion of physical contact, despised by his peers, and underneath the insecurities lies a passive-agressive jerk who will gladly insult/assault you as soon as your back is turned. The only difference is that there is no Edda in Pitts High School, thus noone to force Gunther to service her while he lies motionless, muttering and twitching and hoping it will be over soon.

  41. Illustrator Steve
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    MT – Without the everyday ammenities Mark had become accustomed to back home in the USA, such as simply hiking over to the T. Rading Company to pick up a new Frisby, Mark uses his outdoorsman skills by painting the Jackelrod ball red for use as a nifty flying disc. Mark hopes by throwing the disc to Andy it will distract his savage captors long enough for him and Andy to carry out their plot of counter-kidnapping the little village’s children during their day care program and hold them for two million dollars ransom. Mark figures this way he will have the two million he needs for paying his own ransom so he can leave this terrifying place rather than having to wait around for Bill Ellis!

  42. word-doctor
    November 12th, 2012 at 9:54 am [Reply]

    @Dale (#5):

    So Mark’s hand finally caresses Cherry’s secret places… but Mark is actually somewhere else?

    Brilliant writing, Uncle.

  43. Mibbitmaker
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    MT: So Trail is kidnapped, but he has the run of the place, befriended the residents, and is having a great time? Looks like Mr. Trail has been taken to Woody Wilson Island.

    FW: “Oh, and by the way, I’ll have to decline your request. Why? Well, you did just talk back to your principal, after all….”

    HotC: Well, it’s not exactly Air Pirates you got there, Tatulli, but I’d ready some good lawyers just in case!

    Buckets: Why? Probably to fake out earthlings and take over our world. Simple sci-fi adventure logic, plus hardly a spoiler. Oh, well, can’t let the obvious get in the way of a good smug.

  44. seismic-2
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:01 am [Reply]

    A3G: Margo’s meta-dialog today is perhaps the most apt commentary ever on the entire 21st-century run of this comic strip: “Yes… No… Whatever. Oh, shut up.”

    DT: I find no amusement in the fact that Walt Wallet has won a contest to find the person who most looks like a Flintstones Vitamin. I do detect an encouraging sign of his imminent demise, however, in the fact that he has started hanging out with dead people, beginning today with the late Vincent Price.

    MW: Worst Casablanca movie poster, ever. So yeah, just right for this strip.

    JP, Zits: I had rather begin the day with Scotch for breakfast (which actually makes a nice additive to oatmeal, BTW) than by looking up Connie’s rump.

  45. TheDiva
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:03 am [Reply]

    Bravo, Uncle Lumpy, Bravo! *applause*

    MT: Wow, Stockholm Syndrome set in pretty quickly.

    SFx: “Poachers”? That’s just animalist propaganda defaming the glorious Human Resistance! Enjoy your corrupt, decadent way of life while you can, you depraved furries–soon, the injustice of Manor Farm will be avenged!

    (On an unrelated note, do you suppose “Dandy Lion” is his birth name, or a contemptuous epithet bestowed by the populace on their effete ruler?)

  46. pugfuggly
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    MT okaaaaay…I like watching Mark enjoying his stockholm syndrome as much as the next guy (i.e. not at all), but this had damn well be headed somewhere, and fast. Mr Elrod, within a week I expect to see Mark waging guerrilla warfare, with his fists, alongside his comrades as they stage a daring nighttime raid on an army barracks. Up until a week ago, I could have never even conceived of the awesome peanut-butter-plus-chocolate combination of Mark Trail and Che Guevara, but now that I have, I WANT TO SEE IT DAMNIT!!!

    DT So wait, the Sunny Wheat Vitamin Corporation decided to use a balding, decrepit man as their mascot? Are they using him as a cautionary tale? ‘Kids, take your vitamins! I didn’t, and look what happened to me! I’M ONLY 43 YEARS OLD!!!”

    SFx When I want to get rid of a group of hunters carrying guns capable of taking down a rhino, I sic a fox on them. And just to be sure, a mouse as well.

    Also, rhinos don’t live in the jungle, and neither do lions. Or do we only use biological facts to solve puzzles when it suits you, Mr Weber?

  47. Nehemiah Scudder
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    Exellent work, Uncle Lumpy. Did you publish a lot of stuff in the New Yorker back when William Shawn edited it? I’m sure I recognize the style.

    Blondie: Ha ha! Of course, Dagwood’s real password is probably “turkey” or “pumpkin_pie”.

    // But I wouldn’t rule out “cranb3rry”. 1337, anyone?

    HOTC: Heh.

    Zippy: So this is why Josh is taking the week off. He’s hosting characters from Dingburg. Say hi to Zippy for me, Josh!

  48. pastordan, lazy professor
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    @Little Blue Bicycle (#30): Dick’s getting naked for Activia. He’s old, you know.

  49. Greg
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    MT: Don’t these kids have something better to do than watch an idiot throw a red disc to his dog? Wait, did the wireless go down? Someone get it working before we chew Mark’s face off and throw it around like a frisbee!….

  50. bats :[
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    Since Uncle Lumpy took care of Mark, I’ll see to Mary…

  51. Mincemeat
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:23 am [Reply]

    FW: I don’t understand why the principal is so surprised. Those guys look exactly like the kind of nerdlingers I’d expect to see in technology club. Wait, am I actually supposed to know who those guys ARE, and recognize that they’re an odd fit for such a club? Because I don’t, and I read the damn strip every day. I can’t tell any of the mopey assholes in FW apart.

  52. seismic-2
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:28 am [Reply]

    Brain-bleach material for this morning: watch Dick undress in today’s DT. Then add the caption “Lemon Party!”

  53. Santa Royale With Cheese
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:35 am [Reply]

    Retail: Yes, regular Band-Aids™ are naturally “camo” if you happen to have Band-Aid® skin tone. As Ricky Gervais would say, “racial…”

  54. Ned Ryerson
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:38 am [Reply]

    Bravo, Uncle Lumpy! Your Mark Trail tale was beautiful and insane.
    “Good times! Who wants gelato?!”

  55. TheDiva
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:38 am [Reply]

    A3G: Give her a break, Greg. It’s tiring growing two feet in the space of a few seconds.

    C’shaft: This would be cute, if I could only believe that there’s room in in Crankshaft’s withered, decayed husk of a soul for this kind of simple, innocent joy.

    FW: “It’s just that…well, you’re the nerds that even the other nerds won’t talk to.”

    Luann: Speaking of which…say, is there anything that could make Gunther any more undesirable as a romantic partner? Oh I know, how about giving him a near-pathological fear of physical contact with the opposite sex born out of his Self-Proclaimed Nice Guy notion that women are simultaneously to be idolized and regarded as some incomprehensible alien species?

    MW: Say, I didn’t know Mark Trail was in Casablanca

    Phantom: Special Guest Star: Dhalsim!

    Pibgorn: I refuse to have a civil conversation with anyone who uses such convoluted middle-management-esque speak as “sublimate our more barbarous emotions.”

    Pluggers have no meaningful relationships.

  56. Ned Ryerson
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:40 am [Reply]

    The Elrod Ball speaks. “What, you were expecting Papillon?”

  57. pastordan, lazy professor
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:51 am [Reply]

    The Amazing Spider-Man: For some reason, Daily Ink didn’t transmit this, or Snuffy Smith. It’s not a loss.

    Apt. 3-G: For some reason, Margo only really looks alive when she’s telling someone to stick it where the sun don’t shine. This is why she’ll be on the very first season of Celebrity Apprentice: Funny Papers, coming in 2014.

    Arlo and Janis: I knew several World War I vets growing up, quite a few World War II vets, and one guy who was a POW in Korea. But when I was very young – in the early 70′s – I met a guy who had served in the Spanish-American War, 114 years ago now. Yeah, nobody else is ever impressed by that story either.

    9 Chickweed Lane: Meh. Samurai Jack did it better.

    Cow and Boy: “God never gives you more than you can handle” is the worst theology ever, the widow’s excuse for not taking antidepressants or sending her Alzheimer-afflicted husband to a facility where he can get skilled nursing care. It’s not God that gives you too much, but the world, and God stands by you and leads you graciously into a new future. Also, God’s a Jew.

    Dick Tracy: Well well, said Dick, peeling off layers of clothing, so you’ve won a contest? Looks like your day has peaked then, doesn’t it. (Into wrist-wizard) Mumbles, come on up here. The spider just caught a couple of flies.

    Judge Parker: Perhaps the most interesting thing about this episode is that Bea’s fingernails match her shirt fabulously.

    Mark Trail: <Checks Uncle Lumpy’s masterwork, wonders how early one has to get up to write something so on-target, gives up on trying to top it.>

    Rex Morgan, M.D.: It’s June, and *this time it’s personal*. Or at least, one can hope.

    Tom Toles: Is a drug joke political?

  58. Anson Pants
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:53 am [Reply]

    Dick Tracy 50+ posts and not one Seinfeld reference to “a contest” ?

  59. Mikey
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    MT: Fantastic Uncle Lumpy!! Reading your Mark Trail post I could envision Rusty slowly morphing into Gollum over the long years and…oh wait a minute…

  60. Stroker Ace
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    Slylock – Rhino horn is an aphrodisiac. As is Cassandra Cat. Both might be headed to a small island in the Caribbean.

  61. Austria
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:03 am [Reply]

    …Is it just me, or did Rosa’s skintone change?

  62. bats :[
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:06 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#46): re MT: yeah, even with Uncle Lumpy’s idyll, I can’t see Mark maintaining an interest in anything for long.
    (To Poteet and The Divine One…this was hard to do! Next time it’ll be Mark…promise!)

  63. Liam
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:19 am [Reply]

    MW-”Never gets old”? Of course it’s old. It was made in the Forties.

    MW 2-”I can’t believe that Rick leaves his old girlfriend for Louie.” “Damnit, Dawn, now you’ve just ruined the movie for me.”

  64. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:25 am [Reply]

    @pastordan, lazy professor (#57): Jack Jack Jack!

    loved that show.

  65. Gringo
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:26 am [Reply]

    @Austria (#61): Is she getting the Cayla whitening treatment?

    Oh no, Batty and Evans are double-teaming us!

  66. seismic-2
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:29 am [Reply]

    MW: The next time we see a Charterstone pool party, I surely hope someone remembers to say “Round up the usual suspects.”

  67. bbofun
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:32 am [Reply]

    MW- Of course Jim loves CASABLANCA and “Dry Lime Sodas”(whatever the hell they are)! Next week, they’re showing “MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY” and featuring Ocean Spray Cranberry juice- he won’t get within a mile of the place.

    RMMD- “How could we find out who’s knocking?”
    “I don’t know. Junior always finds out.”
    “He walks out of the room, and then he knows. HE MUST BE PSYCHIC!”
    “Maybe if we walk into the other room, we’ll know, too!”
    “No. I’ve tried that. The knocking gets louder, but I still don’t know.”
    “What happens then?”
    “The knocking just stops. Then I don’t have to worry about it anymore.”

    FW- 1) “I’m also wondering why you came into the principal’s office to go on a field trip. Do you think the bus is in here?”
    2)Well, I don’t see anything in the school handbook that forbids it, so, okay.”
    3)”No. No, I can’t be less incredulous.”

  68. pastordan, lazy professor
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:43 am [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#64): There was so much outside shit, high art, and humor squeezed into that show, it was unbelievable. The one fact that continues to blow my mind is that the same actor portrayed Jack, Hermes Conrad, and the guy John Travolta kills by accident in Pulp Fiction.

  69. Northern lurker
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:43 am [Reply]

    SF: nevermind the fact King Dande Lion should be king of the savanna not the jungle can’t he just kill and eat the intruders? He is a lion after all.
    And wasn’t there a book called “before I kill and eat you”?

  70. Northern lurker
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:46 am [Reply]

    RMMD: I take it the marine pilot wife from an earlier strip wasn’t impressed with Honey’s landing strip.

  71. Dartpaw86
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:00 pm [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#46):

    Remember that this isn’t our world, it’s a parallel/fantasy world of talking animals. So if a Lion can wear a crown, he can live in a Jungle if he wants to.
    It’s fantasy, it doesn’t have to make sense.

  72. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#62): That’s okay — it was mercifully quick and there might be days when Andy wouldn’t mind…

  73. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:10 pm [Reply]

    DT — Uh-uh, no way, I’m not falling for this again. The last time I got sucked into a Walt Wallet storyline, I ended up following GA. Sorry, DT, nice try.

  74. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:12 pm [Reply]

    9CL — Interesting. I never realized Solange looked so much like a small spindly-legged sheep.

  75. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#55): Yes. I’d like to believe this, but unless Crank was visited overnight by Three Spirits (Dickens, not booze), I’m not buying it.

  76. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:24 pm [Reply]

    GA — Do kids today wear outfits like this at school, with the pointed collars and sweaters and all? I’m genuinely curious. I know they don’t have hideous eyes like Boog’s, and I’m trying to focus on something else.

  77. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:36 pm [Reply]

    MW — If you haven’t read MW yet, don’t look at the poster! It’s too late for me. *bathes eyes in tepid water again*

  78. Irrischano
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    In Panel 1, Dick Tracy is wearing a trench coat and hat and is referred to as “Richard”. In Panel 2, he is stripped of his coat and hat and downgraded to “Dick”. I was totally bracing myself for him to be free of both clothes and name by Panel 3.

  79. Calico
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:54 pm [Reply]

    I’ve heard of a Lime Rickey, but a Dry Lime Soda?
    Looks to me like they’re drinking Tanqueray and tonic out of a couple of Kong ™ toys.

  80. Mr Foofram
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    MT: Mark and Andy are being held on an island in Wisconsin, probably on Lake Winnebago. “Miami” is actually Oshkosh. Mark and Andy can simply wait for the lake to freeze over and walk to the mainland. Or, they might stay for the ice fishing.

  81. Calico
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:57 pm [Reply]

    @pastordan, lazy professor (#57):
    Huh, I got Snuf with my Daily Stink subscription. Try again and maybe it’ll work.
    I don’t really follow the TV Addict Idiot show, so not sure about that one.

  82. pugfuggly
    November 12th, 2012 at 12:59 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#62):

    Nice! And if Andy had the choice, I’m sure he’d go for a dramatic, fiery death over a slow decline into doggy decrepitude.

    @Dartpaw86 (#71):

    Remember that this isn’t our world, it’s a parallel/fantasy world of talking animals. So if a Lion can wear a crown, he can live in a Jungle if he wants to.

    Oh, I’m fine with suspension of disbelief, but Slylocks seems to meander into reality whenever he needs an easy solution to his problems. Like ‘The anteater did it because he has no teeth!’. Well beavers don’t have the opposable digits or the upper-body strength to set up or maintain an ant farm, so who’s the liar now? “Oh! The frog must be guilty because his children don’t have legs!” Well, an amphibian would have no use for moisturizer either, so there goes your motive! “The rat is a thief because bats don’t lay eggs!. Sure, but why are you calling an exterminator? Isn’t that a home invasion??

  83. Calico
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:01 pm [Reply]

    @Ned Ryerson (#56):
    I was just thinking of Henri in paradise, but the pull of the “real” world is just too much.
    I hope Mark finds some big diamonds. Oh, wait, Sam Driver will be the one who finds them, in Bubba’s mancave mine.

  84. Calico
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:03 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#5):
    I like Big Island Thugs as a band name! Kind of like Great Big Sea (who I really like, BTW).

  85. Joshua
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:08 pm [Reply]

    I would like to see Kraven try to have Spider-Man banned from the Jungle World casino. I would think that interfering with rehearsals for the casino’s headline performer and threatening to have him arrested for a crime he hasn’t even committed yet would make Spider-Man an undesirable person to have in the building.

  86. bats :[
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:30 pm [Reply]

    I kept going back to “dry lime soda” (actually, my response is along the lines of “WTF is dry lime soda!?!). It sounded like a generic thing, like “ginger ale” or “tonic water” or “rat poison,” but there’s a Dry Soda Co., with some pretty intriguing flavors.
    How the deuce they’re known in Santa Royale is another question entirely…

  87. Chaze
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:41 pm [Reply]

    MT – “Uh, Otto? I’ll give you $2.5M if I can stay here. Deal?”

    FCC – Let me get this straight. The melonheads go out to play football and come in absolutely perfect. Not a scratch. Not a tear. No dirt. No need for “bang-aids.” But let them go out in their playtogs and they come in the house looking like they had a run in with Pennywise the Clown. Who the hell are these kids playing with?

  88. commodorejohn
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:45 pm [Reply]

    Cherry, where is Mark?

    I’m sorry, Rusty, but we had to send him to an island where he will be able to run and chase squirrels all day long!”

  89. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:46 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#73): same here.

  90. fluffy
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:48 pm [Reply]

    Mark Trail: This latest remake of The Prisoner seems to completely miss the point of the original show.

  91. Chaze
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:49 pm [Reply]

    MW – Yes, Dawn, some things are timeless. And then some things are a waste of time, such as reading your strip, trying to figure out the significance of dry lime sodas and Casablanca.

    GT – “Gallagher, you’ve committed too many personal fouls. You’re being deported.”

  92. Horace Broon
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:51 pm [Reply]

    DT: Walt Wallet, of course, looks nothing like Vitamin Flintheart save for his hair colour … which is in fact always the case with lookalike competition winners, so fair enough.

    HtH: Well, we all knew he’d snap eventually.

    JP: “And that plan is a threesome!”

    MW: Dawn has never seen Casablanca before. Okaay…

    Phantom: I’m calling it now: it really is a magic lioness who wants the miners off the land.

  93. Chaze
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:55 pm [Reply]

    LuAnn – Please, Gunther, make it easy on all of us and just come out of the closet. Everyone has already preassumed you are gay. Don’t string Rosa along.

    Frazz – I have no problem shooting that kid. Give me a gun. I’ll do it. Not a problem. I’ll be a hero forevermore in the faculty lounge.

  94. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:56 pm [Reply]

    best. Poe tribute. EVAR!

  95. tallyHO
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:56 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#2):

    cocked and loaded?

  96. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:57 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#87): Isn’t Billy, even though he looks like he slid out of the chute already fifty years old, supposed to be seven? Isn’t that kinda young for football? Or am I out of touch (again)?

  97. FredCDobbs
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:59 pm [Reply]


    I say this without snark, but you may just have been Wally-Pipped by that Mark Trail masterpiece.

  98. Chaze
    November 12th, 2012 at 1:59 pm [Reply]

    JP – I would be lying if I said I had the faintest clue as to what is going to happen with this storyline. I’m thinking that maybe Bubba weakened the integrity of the mine with his interior decorating and that a beam will give way, burying everyone except Sam, who will immediately spot the exposed gold vein and make millions.

  99. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:13 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#98): burying everyone except Sam, who will immediately spot the exposed gold vein and make millions

    Waaaay too much work for a Wilson protagonist. Sam will stand there while everyone else is buried, be captured on a cell phone video that ‘goes viral’, be credited with ‘saving the lives’ of the survivors by ‘calling attention’ to their plight, and receive a huge payout from Avery’s will, which he re-wrote on the runway to make Sam the sole beneficiary. Hence, his riches.

  100. Raghead the Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:14 pm [Reply]

    How about the Spider man villain, Rhino? Would they want *his* horn? I somehow, um, doubt it. But any Slylock strip would be improved by introducing rhinos. Rhino away, I say!

  101. Tmdess
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:16 pm [Reply]

    It’s not really a big deal that Walt W. is 110 — Dick Tracy is at least 100!

  102. seismic-2
    November 12th, 2012 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    Are we suppose to be posting in this “regular” thread or the new meta-post one? I’m so confused. Yeah, I know that makes me sound like Toby Cameron in MW, but still.

  103. Atheist amongst the flock
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:29 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#102): I would suggest posting on the relevant thread.

  104. KreatureFeatures
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:35 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#50): As usual, your version of Mary Worth is far superior. Moy and Giella need you on their team.

  105. I speak Jive
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:46 pm [Reply]

    @Mibbitmaker (#43): Re: FW – What does the handbook say about that? Is there any rule about talking back to the principal?

    MW – I have to give this strip credit. At least Dawn isn’t saying that Ilsa should have left with Rick instead of Victor.

    There are international readers of Pluggers? In Sweden, no less?

  106. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    November 12th, 2012 at 3:57 pm [Reply]

    @I speak Jive (#105): At least Dawn isn’t saying that Ilsa should have left with Rick instead of Victor.

    What kind of uncultured beefwit would say such a thing!?

  107. The Divine O'F
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:18 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#62): Excellent, bats:[ ! But… poor Andy!

  108. Dartpaw86
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:20 pm [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#82):
    I see your point :)

  109. seismic-2
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:45 pm [Reply]

    @Chaze (#91): GT – “Gallagher, you’ve committed too many personal fouls. We’re taking away your damn sledgehammer.”

  110. Amos Snarkadder, CQB
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:47 pm [Reply]

    Crankedshaft Hypothermia. It could happen, couldn’t it?

    MW Dawn is such a thoughtful, considerate date. She’s going mono-arm in solidarity with Jim.

  111. Peanut Gallery
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:48 pm [Reply]

    DtM – Really, Dennis? And how do you feel about lasagna?

    RMMD – Well, if he can be at the hospital “and on TV!” at the same time, he can be here too!

    SFx – Help Slylock Fox find all the humans, kill them, cut off some precious part of their anatomy, and leave the carcasses to rot.

    Ziggy – No, but you’ve won second prize in a beauty contest.

  112. Peanut Gallery
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:55 pm [Reply]

    MW – I have to assume they are drinking calcium oxide soda. It has much more of a kick to it than calcium hydroxide soda. But the latter kind is far more effective at slaking your thirst.

  113. Amos Snarkadder, CQB
    November 12th, 2012 at 4:58 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#55):

    A3G: Give her a break, Greg. It’s tiring growing two feet in the space of a few seconds.

    Hey, how did you know that? We can’t see below Margo’s waist.

  114. Amos Snarkadder, CQB
    November 12th, 2012 at 5:22 pm [Reply]

    @pastordan, lazy professor (y#97): That one line and accompanying leer were what made me a big Barbara Stanwyck fan. 4Evah!

  115. Chance
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:04 pm [Reply]

    Tiny rhino. Tiny rhino. Tiny rhino!!

  116. tallyHO
    November 12th, 2012 at 7:41 pm [Reply]

    snuffy smif

    Rrrrrraise the ruff!

    Throw ya paws in the air,
    Shake yo tail like you jus’ don’ care!

    Is Elvirey a mad cuz the doggy’s in the “Fambly Way” and…
    gee whiz. Do she and Lukey have kids?
    Wotta insensitive clod, that Lukey is.

  117. Patrick
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:06 pm [Reply]

    Unfortunately, the poachers are out of King Lion’s jurisdiction. Lions live in the sahara, not the rainforest. Maybe he should work out an extradition treaty with Prime Minister Tiger.

  118. Der Kömmëntätör, Herr Schnärkïnätör
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:12 pm [Reply]

    FW, Panel 2 – The Principle looks like stoned out of his mind.

    // A Funkyverse coping technique methinks.

  119. Sgt. Stoned
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:12 pm [Reply]

    MW: It would be cool if Jim and Dawn have time-warped into 1942 and they run into the Mary Worth of 1942 looking exactly as she does today.

    Zippy the Pinhead: The National Bohemian Beer mascot! It’s been a long time, buddy…

  120. tallyHO
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:25 pm [Reply]

    @Patrick (#117):

    Word is that Prime Minister Tiger doesn’t care what happens to King Dandy Lion or his lackies.

    What gets me is that Slylock traveled so dang far for this case. Think about the objective.

  121. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    November 12th, 2012 at 10:36 pm [Reply]

    Dear Tropical-Island Kidnappers:
    I am a friendly and sociable person with employers with fairly deep pockets (a university has to have at least as much money as a second-rate nature magazine, right?). I’ve been under quite a bit of stress at work lately, and I could use some down time. Your island kidnapping facility looks to be just what I need: warm weather, a lovely lagoon, kind inhabitants, and even an official Island Frisbee! Name the day and location, and I will present myself for immediate kidnapping.

    Looking forward to meeting you!–bourbon babe

    p.s. I, too, can supply my own dog.

  122. Poteet
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:08 pm [Reply]

  123. Der Kömmëntätör, Herr Schnärkïnätör
    November 12th, 2012 at 11:15 pm [Reply]

    MT – Remind me again as to why OttoPirate & Co didn’t just keep the yacht.

  124. Droopy Says
    November 13th, 2012 at 1:06 am [Reply]

    @Der Kömmëntätör, Herr Schnärkïnätör (#123): Because if they kept the yacht, how could Editorbillellis get home to arrange the ransom?

  125. Dale
    November 14th, 2012 at 7:11 pm [Reply]

    @zxt bee pollen (#125):

    Do these premature ejaculation pills cause it or prevent it. If the former, they would be great for the practical jokester who has a death wish.

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