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Better Half, 2/6/13

For years, I’ve enjoyed the Lockhorns as the most harrowing cautionary tale about marriage available on the comics page, but since I started reading the Better Half earlier this year, I think we have a new title holder. Because, after all, relations between Leroy and Loretta are marked by unrelenting hatred, and we all know that hatred isn’t the opposite of love — it demands too much focus and passion for that. No, the opposite of love is the numb, unfeeling indifference that Harriet and Stanley have for one another! See, they were going to leave each other for other, more attractive people, but then they couldn’t be bothered, because there were good shows on TV.

Mary Worth, 2/6/13

So, you get disqualified if you drop your cake during transfer, but if you drop your cake during transfer because you leapt into the crowd and strangled a heckler to death in a terrifying rage-fugue, I’m pretty sure you get some kind of honorable mention.

361 responses to “OH SNAP HE DROPPED THE G-BOMB”

  1. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:27 am [Reply]


    Masked outlaw Zorro continues his vendetta against the entire Nutmeg family.

    Ballard Street

    Thirteen years after his passing, gay raconteur Quentin Crisp stands within hailing distance of a beaver. The afterlife must be a very strange place indeed:

  2. Chareth Cutestory
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:32 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: I keep going on about the QWOP-like body mechanics and motion lines that these two elderly bodies keep throwing off and I know I should just LET. IT. GO. ALREADY. Then today’s strip comes along to just add fuel to the fire.

  3. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:34 am [Reply]

    A3G-”I’ve got this raging case of blue balls.”

    MW-At that point Mary takes the cake and throws it into the audience.

    MW 2-Mary is planning to give the heckler the Aldo special.

  4. Christopher
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: “NEITHER DO I!” shouted Mary, just before she twisted her body and hurled the cake into the audience, causing multiple fondant-related injuries. Then, brushing her hands, she walked away, muttering, “Piece of shit cake really didn’t express the beauty of nature anyway.”

  5. gleeb
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:43 am [Reply]

    Mary will give that punk the meddling of a lifetime!

    SallyRolos Tuesday: I hate February. Sure, it’s short, but whenever you step outside, you become hatched.

    Slylock: So remember this, kids. Mama Spider’s hoping to eat that fly as a last meal before being devoured herself by her ravenous offspring.

    3-G: “How bad is the pain?” What part of that sentence requires Tommie to purse her lips like that?

    ‘bean: Yes, you thought she’d like to say hello to the father apparently was so horrible, that he had no visitation rights granted by the family courts. I suppose now that he’s in a weakened condition, Kerry can have revenge for the nasty things he used to do. Where are the basement stairs? It’s time for their Tommy Udo act.

    Between Fiends: To be fair, if he canceled cable teevee, he might be forced to pay more attention to her and her constant coffee-related complaints.

  6. Old Folkie
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:45 am [Reply]

    A3G: Greg’s been hanging around Margo, but doesn’t know who Tommie is?

    Sally Forth: Either it’s just raining on Sally and the kid, or the editors have just Xed them out of the strip…

  7. Tom D.
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:45 am [Reply]

    “Neither do I” said Mary has she used her “powers” to cause the heckler’s head to explode.

  8. Dennis Jimenez
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    Known hereafter as Mrs. “Butterfingers” Worth….

  9. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    @Chareth Cutestory (#2):

    Sheesh, in Panel 1 John Gill is leaning backwards so far that if he were to let go of the cake he would fall on his ass.

    The choice to make the act of two people carrying a few pounds of cake across a room the dramatic centerpiece of this story arc was an odd one, to say the least.

    The most realistic part of the strip is, of course, the heckler. Many key events on the main ACC (American Cake Championship) Tour have had to install cages or glass walls to keep the cake hecklers from hurling empty cans of frosting, marzipan roses, even raw eggs onto the floor. It was only a few years ago that it was still common to throw an octopus out in order to commemorate someone sweeping the Grand Slam of cake events (New York-Chicago-Houston-LA-Philadelphia-Miami-Santa Royale-Mexico City).

  10. Mardou Fox
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:47 am [Reply]

    Hecklers at the cake gymkhana? OK, I wasn’t prepared for that! Do you think they throw octopi out on the baking room floor, too, as if they were at a Red Wings game?

  11. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:54 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#9): @Mardou Fox (#10): Two great minds with the octopus meme? What can this mean?

  12. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    There’s considerable caterwauling in Wednesday’s Lio:

    Heathcliff is MIA — probably because of his close encounter with Zorro:

  13. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    Love is… : Still, very Weirdly.

  14. Mibbitmaker
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:56 am [Reply]

    BH: See, TV-bashers? TV saved a marriage! ….Okay, not a particularly GOOD marriage, but still….!

    MW: “Hey! Heckler! Yeah, you! Ever heard of a man named Aldo Kelrast? ….Who is he? Oh, just someone you’ll meet in HELL very soon! I believe you two’ll have alot in common…!”

    MW, about: Notice how lovingly rendered the heckler is here? Just a hint of how to do it right, Pibgorn-maker Brooke McEldowney!

    MW, meta: With Pibgorn Glibporn, we can palpably feel the spiteful tantrum Brookie is throwing at us. Ms. Worth, on the other hand…… well, let’s just say…. I’m scared. Unlike Brookie, Mary doesn’t fool around!

    You pick out the place to go in hiding, Josh, and the rest of us will follow…..

  15. Marc
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:57 am [Reply]

    A3G- If the next words out of Tommie’s mouth are some variation on “Did it hurt when you fell from heaven”, I’m going to lose my mind.

    Funky- Listen up Coach Anal, he’s not fucking dying over there. He’s recovering from a stroke. Unless of course her plan all along was to off her husband one way or another. If the stroke didn’t kill him, the smothering soon will.

    Luann- Bwad is looking for a valentines card that can adequately express just how much he enjoys wearing Toni’s makeup. And clothes….

    Mark Trail- “Yes sir Mr. Catfish sir, I’ll catch you later alligator. Gee, what a nice fellow. Well, I better go snoop around his van now.”

    Mary Worth- I can’t wait until Mary and all of the other contestants jump into the crowd Slapshot style, unleashing the biggest brawl the cake baking world has ever seen.

    Cranky- Feel free to lay down and stop breathing any time you’d like.

  16. Chyron HR
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:57 am [Reply]

    MW – I’m just saying, no old ladies ever dropped any of Mayor Fenty’s cakes.

  17. The Right Venerable Pasdordan
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:57 am [Reply]

    Josh is in good philosophical company this morning. Elie Wiesel said,

    The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. The opposite of beauty is not ugliness, it’s indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, but indifference between life and death.

    And John Berger, writing in 1984 about the mess that would become the former Yugoslavia:

    The opposite of love is not to hate but to separate. If love and hate have something in common it is because, in both cases, their energy is that of bringing and holding together—the lover with the loved, the one who hates with the hated. Both passions are tested by separation.

    I’ll bet you didn’t know snarking on the comics was such heady business.

  18. Esther Blodgett
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    MW: And just like that, “Mary Worth” becomes “Kill Bill, Vol. 3.”

    GF: Those…those are the most adorable charities ever.

    OBH: I hate to say it, but MG&G did the same joke better just a few days ago.

    FW: I’ve decided that nothing in this or any other Funky storyline can disturb me, because I can’t stop focusing on Darin’s freakishly long face. Forget cancer, strokes, and blown-out knees…why isn’t anyone starting a charity walk for this man’s John Merrick disease?

  19. AhClem
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    SM – So Peter is riding on the back of a truck heading for San Francisco. He suddenly leaps over to another truck going 60 MPH in the opposite direction (with no ill effects) and is now heading towards … San Francisco? All this on a multi-lane freeway with lots of traffic and none of the other drivers noticing some idiot leaping from truck to truck.

    My head hurts — please make it stop.

  20. nescio
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    MW: Oh, please, Mary isn’t set off by heckling, it’s that the youth presumes that he can give Mary advice.

  21. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    MW: Hey, isn’t that ol’ one-arm Jim? He making good use of the audio amplifying qualities of that prosthetic hand?

  22. The Right Venerable Pasdordan
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:03 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#9): Much like the Sex Pistol’s American tour, the American Cake Championship events are arranged to provoke as much hostility and confrontation as possible. John Dill junkie figurine sold separately.

  23. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:04 am [Reply]

    Abstruse Goose: Hooray! The Goose is back!

  24. Voshkod
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    Ah, hell. Mary’s gonna flash back to her time at Fallujah Hue City Chosin Reservoir Iwo Jima Hürtgen Forest Passendale Buena Vista Antietam Mexico City Bunker Hill. When she comes out of the fugue state, naked and wielding a blood-soaked spatula, she’ll have taught that heckler something about nature’s fury, if not nature’s beauty.

  25. AhClem
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    MW – Obviously someone neglected to tell Bobby McHeckler that the NHL lockout is over, and that the Santa Royale Wombats have resumed playing their games at the other arena down the street.

  26. Dan
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    I’m so tired of these ageist punks hanging around the cake decorating contests, insisting that “deccin’” is only for the hip new generation.

  27. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#11):

    It means that those bastards at the ACC are not content with dominating and monopolizing the sport of caking. They have spread their tentacles throughout the international sports arena, and every time they sign a new contract, it feels as if they are spitting the ink into our very souls.

  28. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    FW: Fred, of course, never fought for his visitation rights. Wouldn’t want any unpleasantness. Asshole.

  29. Mardou Fox
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:11 am [Reply]

  30. Anonymous
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:11 am [Reply]

    I honestly can’t wait to see what happens in tomorrow’s Mary Worth, although I’m sure it will be fairly dull.

  31. S. Stout
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    MW: If Mary, an elderly woman, wants to strangle a man for calling her “granny”, I can’t imagine the horror that would ensue if someone called her a meddling c***.

    Luann: “Not now Shannon. I’m trying to find a card showing a woman having sex with a potato, so I can convince Toni that our relationship makes sense.”

  32. The Ghost of Jarrod
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    MW – Oh, snap. Mary is totally going to meddle that guy. She’s going to meddle him good.

    MT – Funny, he doesn’t look like Ronaiah Tuiasosopo.

    Luann – B-wad has moved up to fancy Valentine’s cards, like ones with the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers on ‘em.

  33. cheech wizard
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    MW – So, in this country, we have trash-talking at cake decorating contests? I am so not telling my Euro soccer-fan friends about this. It would be…embarrassing.

  34. Mary Worthless
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Um, I thought that they had to move teh cake 3 feet to the display table.

    Where is the table?

    If you look at teh first panel, there is no table in sight and they hae moved six feet from the baking area.

    What gives?

    Are they now entered into the Santa Royale Strongest Granny contest and they will be judged on how far they can carry the 200 pound pile of pink?

  35. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    MT: I just found myself reviewing bass fishing tournament rules. Curse you, Mark Trail. How is it you always incite me to Google this ridiculous stuff?

    February 6th, 2013 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    Mary Mary- So, why again is Mary baking a cake with Mr. Whipple?

  37. Weaselboy
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    MT: A guy named Catfish just said “catch me later”? Is Jack Elrod really that clever, or was this a “broken clock is right twice a day” kind of thing?

  38. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    GA: Actually, if you heat the ring up, it says, “Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul,
    Ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.”

  39. Holly Folly
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    There are hecklers at a cake show? There is apparently, a lot of things I don’t know about cake shows.

    February 6th, 2013 at 9:23 am [Reply]

    Does anyone here play Dishonored? Mary Worth in that last panel reminds me of Granny Rags.

  41. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    @Chareth Cutestory (#2): ((((w-wh-what))))?

  42. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:25 am [Reply]

    With the entire cake being an enormous shrine to St. Mary, shouldn’t the cake just levitate or something?

  43. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    @Holly Folly (#39): Ya know, I Googled “cake show hecklers” — the first three results didn’t have anything to do with cakes shows, and the fourth was about today’s Mary Worth. I’m beginning to suspect this isn’t a thing.

  44. Pyzimber
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    MW: Cake competition noob question: Do competitors get judged on how good the cakes taste? Or is it just on how they look? Because I’m figuring there’s lead or gold or some other heavy material inside that cake that Mary and the other guy are trying to transfer.

    MW2: Also, if there are hecklers, then surely there must be televised sports network coverage. I’m imagining this is being covered on ESPN8 – “The Ocho”

  45. Marc
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:28 am [Reply]

    @Weaselboy (#37): I’d say more it’s more the blind squirrel finding a nut theory. It seems to fit Elrod.

  46. Voshkod
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    @Pyzimber (#44): Pyzimber, I think you’ve got it! John Dill has merely put a layer of ablative fondant over some bars of gold. The judges cut the cake, see the gleam of gold. Dill winks. First place, John Dill!

  47. Leecifur
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:31 am [Reply]

    On Halloween, look into the mirror in a darkened room and chant, “Bloody Mary, Mary Worth, YOU DROPPED YOUR CAKE!”

  48. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:33 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#23): If Mark Trail was any kind of talented writer he would use this tournamant as an opportunity to write about it it in a creative manner…like Mark Twain used in writing his famous story about that frog jumping contest, the Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. Now, THAT would make a good story! And since Mark Trail is no Mark Twain, I think a talented wordsmith like Nehemiah Scudder could do a much better job by taking a stab at doing a story about the legendary “Killer Lure of Centerville’s Bass Fishing Tournamant not to far from a near by city somewhere in the southern part of the state”. Now, THAT would make a good story!

  49. btown
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:34 am [Reply]

    MW: If this whole “cake design contest” is, in reality, a “carry a cake to the display table” contest, shouldn’t they at least have to cake walk? I’m just sayin’

  50. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:34 am [Reply]

    MW: Thanks so much to Mary Worth and Me for this link to a cake competition cake moving disaster! (There were no hecklers. No large-headed cartoon children were harmed in the making of this video).

  51. True Fable
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:36 am [Reply]

    Coloring note: Mary’s eyes should be red any time her inner demon comes to the surface.

  52. Dennis Jimenez
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:37 am [Reply]

    @btown (#49): An’ a paddy cake competition!

  53. btown
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:38 am [Reply]

    MW: This team should be disqualified for poor form, what with Mary adopting the “hernia stance”, and John Dill the “Dagwood Bumstead”

  54. TheSilentG
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:38 am [Reply]

    Too bad Edith and Janice didn’t take Cake-Off hecklers into account when formulating their “psyche out the other contestants by ruining our own chances of winning” scheme from yesterday’s strip. They should have known that even the most toothless insult will send Mary into a Marty McFly-esque fit of indignation, even at the cost of her own self-interest.

  55. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:40 am [Reply]

  56. btown
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:42 am [Reply]

    MW: Panel 3: Mary is holding the heckler by the ear and scolding: “What do you mean ‘Granny’? Don’t you know I’m a virgin”?!

  57. Hibbleton
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    A3G: In case you’re wondering whether Tommie’s astute observation of Greg’s hidden pain reveals an underlying depth of intelligence, it’s just that after carrying Ari down the stairs, Greg’s nutsack is peeking out his pants leg.

    MW: It’s easy to imagine Mary shooting lasers out of her eyes, or some such, and vaporizing the heckler but that would be silly. She’ll merely kick one of her shoes into the audience and impale the jerk through the forehead with its heel.

  58. word-doctor
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    @Weaselboy (#37):

    I think “catch me later” actually got Elrod to milt into a sock.

    MW: Cleanest cut heckler this side of Provo (1954).

  59. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    @Weaselboy (#37): A broken clock isn’t even right twice a day in Lost Forest, since time itself stopped dead in it’s tracks in Lost Forest six decades ago and it’s inhabitants have been frozen in time ever since.
    …Hey! Now THAT would make a good story! What? That story has already been read daily for six decades now? …..never mind.

  60. WeatherServo9
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:45 am [Reply]

    Someone is about to have their cake and eat it, too.

  61. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:46 am [Reply]

    BH: “Then we remembered that we’re both too hideous for other people to consider having sex with, so that scotched the plan.”

    MW: “You! Members Only! You’re dead, do you hear me? D-E-A-D!”

    MT: Basically the entire history of Rusty Trail is summed up in that last panel.

    C-Shaft: Just a minute? Hey, take as long as you need, pops.

    JP: You’ll have to repeat yourself, Sophie. It looks like the prescription drugs Abbey got from her own American doctor just kicked in.

    GA: In brightest day, in darkest night,
    No evil shall excape my sight,
    Not even when I have this flea bitten hat pulled over my eyes.

    GT: Basically it looks like the peacock is going to be responsible for anyone on Gil and Mimi’s team getting anything done at all. It’s a feathered Clambake on steroids.

    Phantom: Hey weren’t there two guys running this mining outfit? The white dude picked the right day to take a long lunch overseas with a suitcase full of company money.

    DtM: But Dennis’ desperate hope was soon dashed. Out in the blinding snow he and Joey saw the telltale red curls, the flash of wire-rim spectacles, the breath of fire. Margaret Wade was out, and she thirsted for vengeance.

    S-M: As has been pointed out, if it’s after midnight in the Big Apple, it should be after 3am on the highway between Vegas and San Fran. Now maybe we’re supposed to assume it’s darker than it looks, thus making Peter’s lack of costume less of a deal, although this is stretching “benefit of the doubt” to its breaking point. Traffic still seems pretty heavy for that hour.

    SSmith: Lukey lost all his natural teeth years ago, and now wears an ill fitting set of dentures he found by the interstate. In terms of sweets, anything goes now.

    A3G: I’d like to think that “How bad is the pain?” will be followed by “Can I make it better?” and “Let’s get you out of these sooty clothes,” and that Tommie will indeed be “keeping busy” while her home burns to the ground. I’d like to think that, but…

  62. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    MW: Look at that mess they left behind on the table! And… is that a box of generic cake mix?

  63. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:52 am [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#55): Don’t go giving them ideas.

  64. Digger
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:52 am [Reply]

    “This audience takes no prisoners, it seems.”
    “Well, you know what a bunch of unruly hardasses those cake crowds can be.”

  65. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:53 am [Reply]

    Slylock: “Only female black widow spiders bite.” Not true, Mr. Weber, Jr.. Lots of species of spiders bite.

    // Yes, I know. But it was very poorly stated.

  66. True Fable
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:53 am [Reply]

    Another day of Peter Parker publicly shooting his web at a passing truck on a busy highway in front of God and everyone, yet nobody catches it on camera, nobody swerves at the sight and nobody even glances his way. So they already KNOW Peter Parker is Spiderman and don’t give a damn, hoping if they ignore him he’ll just go away.

  67. Horace Broon
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:54 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie’s glad to be on triage, because it takes her mind off the fact her friends are, er, probably in triage…

    Greg, meanwhile, confirms both his own self-absorbedness and Tommie’s utter unmemorabilty. (Remember when Scott called “Nurse Tompkins” and got confused when Margo answered the phone?)

    ASM: “Plus, of course, I’m almost as boring as Tommie!”

    Crank: Yeah, respond to your daughter’s concern with withering sarcasm. Next time, she won’t bother.

    DT: In retrospect, the police should have realised Simon Baux was innocent when they noticed he didn’t have an obsession that could be related to his surname to produce an amusing nickname.

    FW: So was Kerry’s mother the coach who insisted Bull had to stay on the team? I’m clinging to the idea that Sunday strip must have meant something.

    MT: You can’t blame Catfish. If I was about to be eaten by a giant duck, I’d be in a hurry too.

    RMMD: “I can also tell the sex of the baby with 50% reliability!”

    S4th: I can’t wait for the hardboiled thriller The Man Who Knew Too Much Battlestar Galactica Trivia by Rolos Tuesday.

  68. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    MW: Everyone thinks that it’s so easy to carry a cake. You don’t understand that official International Cake Exhibition (ICE) regulations require that contestants alternately limbo, rumba and mambo while they are in transit. Yeah, you guys try that, then we’ll see who’s laughing.

  69. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:56 am [Reply]

    @Weaselboy (#37): When mister Catfish told Rusty, “You can CATCH me later”, Rusty could have countered that by saying, “Not if I used a LINE as old as that one!”

  70. Chareth Cutestory
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:57 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#9): Luckily, Mary counterbalances him by thrusting the cake upwards and into his chest in Panel 2. You think that would indeed send him onto his ass, but it doesn’t work out that way since they’re both constantly vibrating.

  71. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    Short ribs:

    PBS — It’s never too early for Lent jokes.*

    Nancy — The farce is strong with this one.

    H & J — Granny will be snickering out of the other side of her mouth after her son-in-law switches the label of her heart medicine with the label of the dog’s worm medicine.

    *Lent 2013 starts on Wednesday, February 13.

  72. Flat 4H
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:01 am [Reply]

    I have good news and bad news.

    First, the good news, Apartment 3G is back up on Darkgate Comic Slurpper!!

    Bad news?

    Apartment 3G is back up on Darkgate Comic Slurpper.

  73. Downpuppy Uppers
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:02 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#61): Midnight in New York is 9pm on the west coast. Peter seems to have taken the Interstate out of Vegas, which would only go to Los Angeles, so he’d have to change trucks & head north, but the sign says 237 miles, not 400 —

    Oh, Splittorf!

  74. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:02 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#61): MT – True, except for one thing….if Mark were to ever say to Rusty, “I’m in a hurry now, catch me later”, he’d be followed by Rusty to the ends of the earth until Rusty finally caught him later as he had offered.

  75. Comrade Denny
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:03 am [Reply]

    MW: Why am I not surprised that Nelson Muntz grew up to be a cake-off hooligan?

  76. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:03 am [Reply]

    @Dan (#26): Mary’s going to shout back “I’m not old, I’m RETRO!”

  77. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    @S. Stout (#31):

    Luann: “Not now Shannon. I’m trying to find a card showing a woman having sex with a potato, so I can convince Toni that our relationship makes sense.”

    I can see a disgruntled Hasbro employee making up one of those on his off hours.

  78. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:06 am [Reply]

    ASM- Will somebody remind me why Parker wears a costume again? WTF?
    MT- Looks like Docfish is up to something, kid. Wow!
    FW- Poor girl. As if nature isn’t already cruel enough in Westview her mother’s also an awful person

  79. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:08 am [Reply]

    @Downpuppy Uppers (#73): Argh! You’re right, I totally muffed the time zone thing there. Of course at 9PM in February the sky should still be dark, even if the heavy traffic is a little more explicable.

  80. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:09 am [Reply]

    MT – It’s nice to see the Centerville bass fishing tournament committee made this a family event by including activities for the kids as well. Today’s fun schedule includes the giant duck kite flying contest which starts promptly at 10:am.

  81. Big Bad Dave
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:12 am [Reply]

    Wow, tough crowd at the cake show. That’s not surprising, because they’re a warm-up for the prime time Lions versus Christians event.

  82. Not Just Any Dipstick
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    Queek where are you?. I miss my daily corgi *brain mush*.

  83. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    A3G: Greg kissed LuAnn and her being LuAnn, she completely forgot who he was and why he was there. He kissed Margo and her being Margo, she got drunk and passed out. So maybe he’ll kiss Tommie and her being Tommie, she immediately drifts deep into the background and is eventually replaced with a lamp on a bookcase. The inglorious trifecta of brush offs.

  84. Dood
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:15 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: OK, I get it. This Santa Royale cake contest is about evoking human nature. John and Mary, for the win!

  85. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    MT – “Mister Catfish, do you know WHERE I can buy some film for this old camera?”
    “FILM? Uh, yeah,kid. I think I remember seeing an old roll of that stuff on display in the Centerville museum where this month’s theme is, ‘obsolete things from the last millenium’”.
    “NEAT-O! Did they have any arrowheads on display?!!”

  86. wossname
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:17 am [Reply]

    A3G – What horrendous injury does Tommie see, that Greg hasn’t even noticed because he was busy being heroic? Since it’s below his waist, we’ll never see it, but maybe Moy could describe it for us.

    @Droopy Says (#Y363): Thank you for verbalizing what’s wrong with today’s A S-M. (Well, some of it, anyway.) I tried to snark about the insane logistics of panel 2, and the daylight/time inconsistencies, but words failed me. Also, from Las Vegas to SF is 596 miles; how has he managed to go only 259 miles in all this time, between the kidnapper’s car and the hammock on the back of truck no. 1?

  87. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    MT – That Rusty Trail, he gets himself into more trouble with a camera than any other eleven year old mutant kid I’ve ever known!!

  88. NonnyMus
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    So, I get the Mary Worth is shaking with rage, but why is John Dill shaking?

  89. Gabacho
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    Apartment 3G – Being fair to Gary, Margo has been roommates with Tommie since the early 1960′s and Margo often can’t remember who Tommie is, so why should Tommie’s neighbor and Margo’s drinking buddy remember her?

    Mary Worth – Being fair to the ESPN 52 cake color commentator, he’s not heckling. “Don’t drop it, Granny.” is very good advice. Also, he was talking to John Dill, not Mary. Hence the “ha-ha”.

  90. Dood
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:25 am [Reply]

    So, Mary’s got her game-face on? Or did she have one too many salmon squares last night?

  91. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:25 am [Reply]

    ASM: So if its only after midnight it could only be 9 p.m. in California and if its not winter then it is still daylight so it still makes no sense. Also, the strip would be much better if instead of “FWIPP” Leiber used “ZOT!” , but that would be an insult to the intellegence of the BC Anteater.

  92. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:30 am [Reply]

    Monty — I’m calling it — the invisibility hat disappears and can’t be found again by Saturday.

    MW — Do you get disqualified if you throw the cake at an audience member?

  93. tb4000
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:31 am [Reply]

    MW: The unbridled rage stems from the boy referring to Mary as Granny, and her decades long lack of offspring has taken its toll. Run, boy. Run while you still have breath to breathe.

  94. Illustrator Steve
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    MT – Today’s strip gave me a great idea. For next Halloween I’m going to dress up as Rusty Trail by hanging my old Minolta SRT 101 around my neck. I can see it now as I go trick or treating door to door by asking if they have any film. They neighborhood will erupt in laughter….just as they do now everytime I walk down the street.

  95. Binder's Butter Beans
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:40 am [Reply]

    The Santa Royale Cake Decorating Competition: there is more at stake here than there is during the World Series, or the Olympics, or even a G20 summit. Don’t drop it, Granny, or I’ll kick your ass into next week.

  96. RBF
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:42 am [Reply]

    MW: I can see FOX Network’s next fall season’s latest offering, hosted by Gordon Ramsay: “Hell’s Bakery.”

  97. Droopy Says
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:42 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#79): I don’t think you got Spiderdick’s time zone thing wrong. I think you’ve uncovered one of the strip’s secrets: its world is so messed up that its Earth rotates backward.

  98. Randy
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:44 am [Reply]

    I’m a stranger to the world of competitive pastry, so I have to ask: Audience? Hecklers?

  99. Chip
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:46 am [Reply]

    Having lead a truly sheltered life, I’ve never been to either an auto race OR a cake competition, but I’m guessing that a cake being dropped is akin to a car crash in NASCAR. Some people watch just to see an accident!

  100. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:47 am [Reply]

    Tommie: “How bad is the pain?”
    Greg: “Oh, don’t worry, the window’s fine. I had to chop down the door, though.”

  101. bbofun
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:51 am [Reply]

    A3G- “How bad is the pain” “Huh?” “From when you fell from heaven!” Tommie’s attempt at a pick-up line fail miserably.

    FW- So, her mother stopped her from seeing her father. Tragic. Of course, logically, she’s older than blondie, here- so she’s an adult and has been for a few years. Where has she been all that time?

    GT- So, not only are these two on the basketball team, they’re both taking AP classes? And yet they still both believe that a peacock is responsible for their ability to play better? Hey, maybe he can help you with your homework, too!

    SF- A) LOVE. B) I think you mean “vendos,” Hil. C) We’re losing reception on Hil and Sally in panel three. better jiggle the rabbit ears.

    Pibgorn- I can’t believe I’m longing for the days of the “I Dream of Jeannie” storyline.

  102. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:54 am [Reply]

    Frazz: better than tossing darts, I guess. (srsly, what elementary schooler wants to be an engineer? at that age, they want to be the pilot/astronaught.)

    9CL: la petite morte. (but I’m a beefwit for noticing.)

    A&J: I am Arlo. I also ROFLd long and loud. (the QG and I agree he’s probably watching Rachel Ray.)

    Doons: is that a baby-bump already?

    GF: featuring FC level malaprops.

    Lio: wins at life. TUNA!!!! *akphbt* (also, notice that Heathcliff didn’t make the cut.)

    Luann: could have fooled me on that one, B-wad.

    PBS: I never thought of it that way before. still not wearing the suit.

    Bizarro: does Mack have a knife?

    GT: topical references in my GT?!? *faints with the vapors*

    JP: continuity fail? (SOCIOLOGY HOOKER!!!)

    JUMBLE: “Roast N Toast” FTW.

    Pluggers: Truth with Furry Confusion Sauce.

    RwO: a rare case of working backwards from a punchline for this strip. (imo)

    SFx: that’s a sootball from “Spirited Away,” isn’t it?

    Retail: who else was thinking ‘Iron Eyes Cody’ when they read that?

    OBH: I saw that one coming, I honestly did.

  103. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:55 am [Reply]

    Love Is. . . in need of the Patriarchy Glasses from Sinfest.

  104. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#13): you win +1 internets, sir.

  105. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:58 am [Reply]


    For those of you who can’t wait until the end of the week to read the conclusion to all this pulse-pounding action, I can reveal the plot developments here!

    - Due to an “anomaly” in the Santa Royale power grid, tomorrow’s strip shows the power going out in the Santa Royale First Forth Bank Memorial Frosting Bowl Arena. We hear a crash! Has Mary dropped the cake?
    - As the spectators light up the torches conveniently stored under their seats, we see that the cake has indeed been dropped! Not only that, but momentum has swung away from the John and Mary Duo, and back toward the Blue Mountain cake, whose bakers have scraped the remains off of the floor and re-sculpted them into a stunningly lifelike likeness of Ray Lewis.
    - Mark and Jon run right through the cake remnants of Ray Lewis without even slowing down, heading toward the display table with what is left of their cake!
    - At the last moment, John is tripped by Team Blue Mountain, the cake flying from his hands, only five yards away from the table. Mary attempts to catch the cake in time, but is interfered with by the other team, resulting in the cake landing on the floor. Fireworks go off as Team Blue is crowned!

  106. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    @Not Just Any Dipstick (#82): I slept in a bit today, and am busy reading comments.

    brainmush will be searched for soon.

  107. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:13 am [Reply]

    MW: The heckler’s date starts to blush.
    “Stop shouting, Brett! You’re embarrassing me!”
    “I paid good money to see half a dozen Betty Crockers bake cakes for SIX HOURS. If I wanna heckle, fuck YEAH, I’m gonna heckle.”

  108. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:15 am [Reply]

    @Digger (#64): It’s a little known fact that MS-13 gang members rise through the ranks by demonstrating their cake decorating skills in fierce competitions.

  109. Droopy Says
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:17 am [Reply]

    @wossname (#86): I shouldn’t have read your comment, because now I’m thinking about even more things that are wrong with today’s Spiderdick. Let’s say the trucks are both doing 65 MPH. They’re going in almost opposite directions, so the relative speed between them is a bit less than 130 MPH–call it 120 MPH, or 176 FPS. And let’s say the hammock is 16 feet above the ground. And I’ll make a huge assumption here, which is that Peter Parker lives in a world where gravity works, and the force of acceleration at Earth’s surface is 32 feet per square second.

    It takes one second to fall sixteen feet under these conditions (T = (2*H/G)^^0.5). That gives Parker one second to change his speed by a total of 176 FPS before he hits the pavement. Half of the change comes instantaneously, assuming the spiderweb is inelastic, so he’ll end up with a dislocated shoulder or some similar damage from the shock. He still has to reel himself in and grab the second truck in less than one second, before gravity pulls him to the ground and he’s dragged along the asphalt. That means his good arm has to accelerate him with a force greater than 88 feet per square second, or roughly three gravities. Assuming Parker can manage the minimum (which is typical of him), there can only be a maximum of forty-four feet of spiderweb between him and the second truck.

    At this point all the Metric Mudges are grumbling “What are those measurements in real units?” To which the answer is “What does it matter? The other day Parker stranded himself in the middle of the desert. The idiot hasn’t had the time to walk back to the I-10, which Lieber and Lee don’t know is the freeway between Lost Wages and Los Angeles.”

  110. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:18 am [Reply]

    MT: Why does it always have to be ducks? Why not flying monkeys?

  111. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:18 am [Reply]

    @tb4000 (#93): The idea that a man ever ventured down there, or that life ever sprang from Mary’s womb is even less believable than this strange alternate reality where a crowd gathers at a cake competition, and then gets to freely jeer at contestants.

  112. Vince M
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:20 am [Reply]

    @cheech wizard (#33): They may trash-talk here, but Europe has those often-fatal cake-decorating riots. Seriously, you do not want to find yourself on a plane full of Scottish cake hooligans.

  113. bunivasal
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    I read the second panel first, and the body language in Mary Worth seems to suggest that Mary and Gene Shalit are wrestling over some novely hat boxes.

  114. Rip Houndstooth, Man Of Action
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    “Don’t drop it, GRANNY!” … I sense a new Mudge t-shirt coming on.

    Delores sensed it several hours before I did, however.

  115. Cloudbuster
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:25 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#108): Last year’s winner. Every flower on that vest represents a kill. You can see the pure evil in her expression.

  116. TheDiva
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:27 am [Reply]

    MW: Granny? That’s the best you can come up with? Heckling Mary Worth is not for the weak, buster.

  117. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#109): It takes one second to fall sixteen feet under these conditions …

    Wait. In one second, don’t you fall 32 feet? Disregarding air friction, of course.

  118. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:32 am [Reply]

    emo dog is emo.

    Poteet says: don’t judge. *gigglez*

    I beg to differ. I’m perfectly sober.

    a different take on Alien. (d’awwwwww!)(also lovely Ripley in her underwear art)

    best T-shirt EVAR! (om nom nom)

    brainmush? I .gif u foxy brainmush. *dies of teh kewt*

    FENNEC!!! (sleepin’ corgi style.) (wooop woooop woopwoop, sleepin corgi style!)

    Corgi playing Sepak Takraw. who knew?

    corgsqui < . . v

  119. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:35 am [Reply]

    Phantom: Conservatives are complaining about a left wing “war on coal”. What would they say to physical assault and verbal abuse of corporate executives? That would be so cool.

    Phantom to banker: You wrongly foreclosed on an 87 year old’s house! *Whack!*

    Phantom to water company: Your unnecessary reservoir project raised rates on thousands! *Smack!*

    Phantom to cola marketer: Your ad campaign claims that you are the choice of a new generation, when in fact your demographics skew slightly older than those of your rival!

    Cola Marketer: Don’t hit me! This issue is trivial! You’re experiencing mission creep!

    Phantom: And you call me a creep! *Bash!*

  120. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:35 am [Reply]

    Oh great. Retconning in “Nancy.” In 1938 there was no such thing as “Mixed Martial Arts.” Back then it was called “kicking someone’s ass.”

    I’m pretty sure today’s Pluggers is racist: the bearman making his grandson walk on all fours and pee outside. No, sorry, that’s demeaning and possibly child abuse.

    I don’t understand Wally’s quip in Dilbert.

  121. Inkwell
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:36 am [Reply]

    John Dill is clearly rethinking his attraction to the murderous old bag.

  122. Austria
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    Arch: I find it a little hard to believe that the Lodge mansion has a crammed-in family room like that. I think even Dagwood has more space between his chair and the TV.

    Curtis: I like Mama Curtis’ ridiculous duck-and-cover reaction to Papa Curtis spitting out his coffee. It’s the little things.

    FW: Darrin’s dogged determination to stay positive is either impressive or dim-witted, given the nature of this strip, and I can’t quite tell which.

    PBS: ….There’s something about Pig in a fuzzy lint suit that’s just adorable.

    RMMD: I think we need some t-shirts about sensing a pregnant woman. Maybe some in maternity sizes.

  123. TheDiva
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    9CL: What exactly did her hair get caught in? The keys? How is that physically possible? (I shouldn’t complain, it has no dialogue and is mildly funny which makes it a success by 9CL standards.)

    A3G: Much like Wile E. Coyote isn’t affected by gravity unless he looks down, Apartment 3-G characters can’t tell they’re physically injured unless somebody mentions it.

    C’shaft: Why just a minute?

    FW: You know you’re in Westview when “hello” is at least as traumatic as “goodbye.”

    Luann: Said the man who wanted to play with the drive-thru headset.

    Pibgorn: Thus marking the first and only time any Brooke McEldowney creation espoused the philosophy “less is more.”

    SM: It’s after midnight in New York, yet broad daylight where he is right now. Clearly Peter took a wrong turn and is in Hawai’i. (Don’t ask me how he managed it–if anybody could find a way to fail that spectacularly, it’s Peter Parker.)

  124. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:43 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#105): After the contest is over, following a boisterous celebration, the heckler and his girlfriend are both brutally murdered. Mary is accused of the crime, but eventually pleads guilty to a lesser charge and pays off the heckler’s family.

  125. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:45 am [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#1): Thirteen years after his passing, gay raconteur Quentin Crisp stands within hailing distance of a beaver. The afterlife must be a very strange place indeed…

    Well done.

  126. trix
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:49 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#110): At the very least, multiple hysterical comments today. The fake hand speaker really spun my wheels. Thanks for the therapy.

  127. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:50 am [Reply]

    I was going to add that Mary becomes obnoxiously sanctimonious, but realized that she reached the maximum in that regard many years ago.

  128. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:53 am [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#102): Isn’t “fat free cream” an oxymoron?

  129. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    @Chip (#99): Some people watch hocked for the fights. Not as many as there used to be, though. Too bad.

    I had a friend that watched Antiques Road Show to see people who thought they had priceless treasures turn out to be not-so-much. There were some ladies that thought that they had a Stradivarius, dedicated specially to his second wife, Anno Domeni in 1756. He perked up his ears when the appraiser said “I wasn’t aware of Stradivari’s second wife.” And then “Anno Domeni” turns out to mean “The year of our Lord”. And then it came out that Strad died 19 years before the date on the violin, and my friend was jizzing in his pants. The violin wasn’t complete crap, but it wasn’t worth $3 million, either.

    I’m so glad someone came up with a name for Schadenfreude.

  130. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#128): I guess you can have fat free sour cream — that is merely an abomination.

  131. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#129): Hockey for the fights

  132. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:02 pm [Reply]

    @trix (#126): Kind of you to say so. Despite my apparent late-onset dyslexia attack.

  133. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:03 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#131):That late-onset dyslexia seems to be catching.

  134. comcis fan
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:09 pm [Reply]

    MW: I surprised there are even bleachers at a cake contest.

  135. Government Cheese
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:13 pm [Reply]

    MW: I’m reminded somewhat of the Anchorman scene with the battling news teams. “NO COMMERCIALS, NO MERCY”.

    As for the audience, they are certainly enjoying the open bar provided generously by Aldo’s Alcohol and Waffle Emporium (his son merely took over the family business).

  136. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:15 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#117): No, you start out with an initial velocity of zero, so after one second with an acceleration of 32 feet per second per second, your final velocity will be 32 feet per second, so your average velocity in that first second was 16 feet per second, and you will therefore have traveled a total distance of 16 feet.

    Yeah, I know, I know – all you have to do is apply the d = 0.5*a*t^^2 formula that results from computing the double integral, but sometimes just using simple reasoning to duplicate the process is more satisfying.

  137. comcis fan
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:17 pm [Reply]

    FW: I don’t like being in the position of defending FW or this awful storyline, as there is very little if any defense. However, it is not unrealistic that one parent would alienate a child from the other in a bitter divorce, and that the child would remain alienated for the rest of her life, or at least for the rest of the alienated parent’s life. It’s not as if the child reaches adulthood and suddenly feels free or willing to contact the other parent, when he or she has been taught (pressured) to excise that person.

    In fact, the unrealistic part of the story might be the daughter’s decision to come and see her father at this point.

  138. Government Cheese
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    Luann: (in Brad’s mind) Hmm, all these seem so cheesy, where’s one that just says “TOUCH MY BALLS”? Shannon then asks why he’s yelling in public.

  139. cheech wizard
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:26 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worth does not take prisoners. Because let’s face it, we’re never going to see an episode where she’s got someone chained up in her basement, living in their own filth. Giles and Moy just ain’t gonna go there.

    Now Abby Spencer, she might take prisoners. In fact, it’s probably a key element of her and Sam’s marital relations.

  140. Little Guy
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:29 pm [Reply]

    Cake Meddler:Let me know when they get to the showdown between Mary and Ron Ben-Israel.

  141. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:29 pm [Reply]

    MT: Flying Monkees? Hey, they’re just trying to be friendly.

  142. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#118): “Yep, I’m working as a model for the tops of nature-themed cakes in nature-themed cake competitions. And dang, I’ll be happy to get home and take off these uncomfortable sugar boots.”

  143. sighing maiden, still sighing
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#141): Oh, you daydream believer, you.

  144. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:32 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#136): Oh. Well alrighty then.

    // ‘Scuse me. I have to go drop something out the window.

  145. Freakin Hemingwad
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:32 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#120): And today is revealed: Baka Gaijin IS Pointy Haired Boss!

  146. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:36 pm [Reply]

    @AhClem (#19): Let’s hope the other drivers didn’t notice and that Peter Parker, Defender Of Public Virtue, didn’t actually cause a chain-reaction crash that killed and maimed several people.

  147. Anonymous
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:36 pm [Reply]

    The Bitter Half: Harriette, Harriette, Harriette. When you found that Stanley felt up the “cute little office assistant” (middle-aged bookkeeper at the Christmas office party) your imagination ran wild and you dreamed of running off with the paper boy. You invented this scenario after the paper boy spurned your advances (averted his gaze when you wore your 70s see-thru blouse on collection day) and Stanley passed out in front of the TV.

  148. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:37 pm [Reply]

    Y #275 and #282 – Read “The Night Strangers”, and you’ll begin to see how Mary stays so young-ish, even if she is almost 140. *Shudder*

  149. Dale
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:39 pm [Reply]


    Assume that:
    1) Bassy is the apparent contest winner (biggest/most/most life-like fish), and
    2) Mark can prove that Bassy cheated.
    Both points are critical for there to be an important story.

    Consider that the lead time for a story in magazines like Wet&Willing is measured in months.

    WHAT should Mark do?
    Report the cheating. The story will be in the local paper within days.
    Wait for the next issue of the magazine, the one about honesty and good sportsmanship.

  150. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:40 pm [Reply]

    MW – What is this, an audience full of Juggaloos?
    Watch it, punk, you’re NO match for the Owner of the West Coast (My new favorite Repub, Chris Christie, is the new official Owner of the East Coast). Prepare to die.

  151. DaveyK
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    There are many pursuits in which a surge of adrenaline, even one fueled by anger at the crowd, can increase the quality of one’s performance, with proper focus. I feel comfortable saying that carrying a cake from Point A to Point B in the “Single Frosting Color Cake Design Competition of Santa Royale” is not one of them.

  152. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:45 pm [Reply]

    MW — I thought Mary had a long-forgotten son, but a little googling has turned up no info. Better-informed Mudges, please advise.

  153. Dennis Jimenez
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:49 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#152): He’s on South Park – “Butters” Worth – well that’s what I heard….

  154. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:50 pm [Reply]

    The Cake Boss The Cake Biddy

    Our heroine finally shows her true colors — and one of those colors is blue:

    Heckler: “Don’t drop it, GRANNY!… ha-ha!”

    John: “This audience takes no prisoners, it seems!”

    Mary: “Geeze-oh-Katy, John, you’re nothing but a big wuss! A real man don’t take that kinda crap off anyone!”

    John: [Whimper]

    Mary (to heckler): “Hey, SHITHEEL, you want I should shove some GODDAMN cake up your ASS?”

  155. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:50 pm [Reply]

    MW — A few weeks after his Santa Royale cake-contest entry was dropped and destroyed when Mary went into homicidal-rage-mode, John Dill entered another cake-decorating competition, this one in Las Vegas with a theme of “Anything Goes.” His new cake also had a figure that looked just like Mary on top. The figure was naked, bent over, and looking between its legs.

  156. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:50 pm [Reply]

    @DaveyK (#151):
    I read that Cat Cora was busted for DUI recently. I understand many chefs really like a swig or two for the most part, but pleeeease don’t get behind the wheel.

    Henry – I see Henry really loves cake too.

  157. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:51 pm [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#153): With a drinking problem, perhaps?

  158. Freakin Hemingwad
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:53 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#149): But they have to carry the fish past a line of hecklers first…

  159. terrapin
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:54 pm [Reply]

    MT: “Sure, Mr. Catfish! I’ll catch you later! Will you take me fishing then? Will anyone take me fishing?”

    A3G: Since “How bad is the pain?” makes little or no sense at this point in the conversation, I’m guessing Tommie is making small talk about a local punk band. “How bad is The Pain? They rocked it last night in Hoboken!”

    MW: Yeah, see this is why I try to avoid competitions like this. Everyone just goes to see an old lady fall on her ass.

  160. Not Worth It
    February 6th, 2013 at 12:57 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#123): FW: – I nominate for COTW!

  161. Hart of Johnny
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:00 pm [Reply]

    It seems this cake show is not ADA compliant. Expect the federales to shut it down soon.

  162. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:01 pm [Reply]

    @terrapin (#159):
    Tommie may have some psychic abilities, like Delores in RMMD.

    Rusty, don’t be hangin’ aroun’ ol’ Catfish John…

  163. Amos Snarkadder
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:05 pm [Reply]

    MW – Seething with rage, Mary launches into an adrenaline-fueled dance, all the while balancing the cake, first on one hand, then the other hand, then on her head, her breasts, one leg, her rear, and at last places it safely on the display table. Meanwhile, John Dill has fainted in a slump.

  164. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:10 pm [Reply]

    MT-”Sorry, kid, but the last time I took pictures I had to register as a sex offender.”

    JP-We are the Drivers. Large amounts of money mysteriously come to us. We don’t mysteriously lose large amounts of money.

  165. Government Cheese
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:11 pm [Reply]

    MW: Meanwhile, Abe Simpson is sitting in the stands screaming “WE PAID FOR BLOOOOD” Hans Moleman then trips over his own glasses; a riot ensues.

  166. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:13 pm [Reply]

    Question raised by today’s Lio: Bucky Katt, Bill the Cat, and Mooch are all pretty close replicas of how they look in their native strips. With Garfield you can tell that it’s Garfield, but it’s not really the way Jim Davis(‘ college interns) draw him. Are Paws Inc. known to be more litigious than the other cat cartoonists?

  167. Newspaper Batman
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:16 pm [Reply]

    I’m genuinely confused by the amount of importance that is being given to the “transfer” part of the cake contest. It almost feels like the main event. You know, instead of the boring parts, like making the cake, finishing the decorations in time, designing something that has anything at all to do with the theme…

    I’ve never been to a cake contest, but between this and the heckler, it looks more to me like Mary and John are in a wacky gameshow of some sort. “Come on, Mary Team, you have 15 seconds left! Carry that cake! Go! Go! Go! Go!” the host excitedly cheers on into his microphone off-panel. Maybe if they succeed in carrying the cake to the finish line and successfully hit the target with their croissant-throwing, they get to climb the Aggro Crag!

  168. DAS
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#1): Quentin Crisp? Beaver? I see what you did there …

  169. Amos Snarkadder
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:18 pm [Reply]

    BG&SS – Hey, look at that! It’s Lukey’s turn this week to wear the Hootin’ Holler communal teeth.

    Cranked Shaft – Where’s a snow plow when you need it?

    FC – Granny Keane shoved the knitting needles deeper and deeper into her thigh, as she thought, “Must… resist … the urge… to kill… these little bastards.”

    FW – No, Ann, you meant “Goodbye.” Go ahead and say it. You’ll feel better. I know we will.

  170. Fritz Basset
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:20 pm [Reply]

    FRED BASSET – Fred has never been seen with this “toy” before: Instead he has finally got off his lazy ass and gone out and caught a rabbit as his breed is wont to do (actually it’s road kill). He has brought it home to share with his family, much to their distress.

  171. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:23 pm [Reply]

    MW-”Neither do I,” Mary says as she gets a good look at the heckler’s face so she knows who her minions are to kidnap and cart off to her secret dungeon so she can meddle him to death.

  172. sully
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:26 pm [Reply]

    It’s truly a sad state of affairs, when a boring Mary Worth plot line involving a cake decorating competition contains more excitement and action than any year’s worth of Spider-Man strips. Sad, but not really surprising.

  173. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:27 pm [Reply]

    MW-You are supposed to heckle the design of the cake not the carrying of the cake. Are the people of Santa Royale really that simple that they find an all pink cake to be acceptable?

  174. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:31 pm [Reply]

    Spiderman-Peter wants to nail the Kingpin in San Francisco. Insert gay joke here.

  175. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:41 pm [Reply]

    MW-”Last person that heckled me they have yet to find his body.”

  176. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    FC: “Not after midnight, dear. You know that.”

  177. Shrug, Honorary Octopus
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:47 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#11):

    And nothing about me. It’s because I’m missing six arms, isn’t it?

  178. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:50 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Honorary Octopus (#177): It’s because I’m missing six arms, isn’t it?

    Be optimistic, I understand that two of those missing limbs can be re-attached!

    Just letting you know, a little forewarning. Because, in this case, to be forewarned is to be four armed.

  179. Shrug, With a Love-Haight Relationship with Spider-Man
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:50 pm [Reply]

    @AhClem (#19):

    And he’s not even wearing Some Flowers in (His) Hair.

  180. Shrug, in a Cake Walk
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:54 pm [Reply]

    @Mary Worthless (#34):

    Um, I thought that they had to move teh cake 3 feet to the display table.

    Where is the table?

    If you look at the first panel, there is no table in sight and they hae moved six feet from the baking area.


    They forgot to bake a GPS device into the cake, and are now hopelessly lost.

    Their only hope of even returning safely to back stage is to drop crumbs behind them to mark their trail.

    ///Though if they had pancakes, that would mark trail even better.

  181. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 1:55 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#152): Yes, Mary has a son, and he is as much a basket case as you would expect Mary Worth’ son to be. He is a ne’er-do-well who shows up in the strip every decade or so, when his latest business flops or he gets runs out of yet another country or whatever. I think he drinks heavily. That’s why Mary was so furious about being called “Granny” – she knows that her loser son will never make her be one, since wherever he goes, the women of the town all pelt him with rocks and garbage.

  182. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:01 pm [Reply]

    @Leecifur (#47): OMG! That is so funny. I’ll never be able to think of Bloody Mary the same way again. Sunday mornings are going to be awkward.

    @btown (#56): Ugh. Thinking of Mary Worth’s virginity is about as revolting as thinking about her lady parts in a Dingo-authored vignette.

    @Comrade Denny (#75): “Cake off.” Is that what the kids are calling it now?

  183. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:02 pm [Reply]

    HtH: “Perhaps I have had enough, Lucky Eddie.”

  184. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:05 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Honorary Octopus (#177): It’s because I’m missing six arms, isn’t it?

    Sorry. It was the pirate costume.

  185. Écureuil Écumant
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:05 pm [Reply]

    GT: Milford, where all the kids are above average, and all the black girls have square asses

  186. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    @Écureuil Écumant (#185):
    LOL – definitely not what I was expecting!
    Rap…rap…rap rap rap…

  187. Dale
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:10 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#164):


    If you were any closer to the truth, Rod and Catfish would take you to meet and stay with the fishes.

    Rod Bassy does NOT cheat when he goes fishing.
    They do NOT bribe the judges. (A good and practical plan, but expensive)

    Catfish lures (sorry about that) the judges into the van. Pictures are taken.
    ‘Nuff sed.

  188. Dood
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:10 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#182): @Baka Gaijin (#182): Tomorrow, Rick Moranis as Bob McKenzie yells from the bleachers, “Cake-off, you hosers!”

  189. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:11 pm [Reply]

    @Mikey (#91): Also, the strip would be much better if instead of “FWIPP” Leiber used “ZOT!” , but that would be an insult to the intellegence of the BC Anteater.

    Are you a fan of Scott McCloud by any chance?

  190. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:11 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#123):ASM: I’m sure that’s it. He’s actually on the H1headed out of Honolulu, because he “Thwipped” a jet he thought was going to San Fran. Why not “Thwip” a jet instead. Spiders hitch rides on all kinds of things; planes,trains, ocean going vessels and. Hell, he’s “Spider-Proportional-Man” so why stop there? “Meanwhile Peter hiches a ride on the International Space Station”. I can’t believe I’m arguing about how he’s not correctly using his “Superpowers”. Meh. I hope he is in Honolulu. The locals don’t appreciate Haole flora or fauna (not sure which he is) invading the Islands.

  191. Dood
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:15 pm [Reply]

    Cake no prisoners, Mary.

  192. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:15 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#189): No but I like the looks of it! ‘Zot’ looks a lot like Zapp Brannigan from Futurama who never seemed that bright, but compared to Peter Parker he’d be a regular Einstein.

  193. Dood
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:17 pm [Reply]

    How much did Dr. Jeff slip the kid to heckle John and Mary?

  194. Shrug, Offside
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:19 pm [Reply]

    @Vince M (#112)

    “They may trash-talk here, but Europe has those often-fatal cake-decorating riots.”

    It’s even more intense in Latin America. Remember the 1969 “guerra del frúitcake” between Hondoras and El Salvador?

  195. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:20 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder (#169)
    I actually have/had a similar familial situation-my Dad had 3 kids by his first marriage, and apparently she acted like a crazy person for much of their marriage – after my Dad married my Mother, she asked that he take all pics of them out of his wallet, stop contacting them, and concentrate on his new family (he was a hardcore alcoholic for a time due to genetics and PTSD from being engaged in WW2, I now realize, but he got sober in AA for 20 years before he passed).
    Dad and I had a good talk about this and other things in ’87 – one stepsister and the stepbro wanted nothing to dowith us, but a few years ago my other stepsis Leigh e-mailed me after calling my Mom – we have e-mailed and FB from time to time, and sadly her Mom, my Dad’s 1st wife, passed recently after having alzheimer’s for several years. I never knew her but cried for her and my family when she peacefully passed.
    I haven’t yet spoken on the phone with Leigh, but I’m sure it will be very emotional when we do. I like her (even love her as a kindred spirit) and think she is a kind, sweet lady who inherited the best of her parents’ qualities. We hope to meet in person eventually.

  196. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:20 pm [Reply]

    “She” meaning first wife – sorry

  197. Freakin Hemingwad
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:21 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#181): Ha ha, I remember that movie (‘Basket Case’) and that’s exactly what I imagine Mary Worth’s son would be like.

  198. Trilobite
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:22 pm [Reply]

    Now that I know Santa Royale is the kind of town where people go to cake decorating contests just to heckle the contestants, I…I kind of want to move there.

  199. Shrug: Life is Bruinal
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:23 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#120):

    “I’m pretty sure today’s Pluggers is racist: the bearman making his grandson walk on all fours and pee outside. No, sorry, that’s demeaning and possibly child abuse.”


    And in the house next door, a dogman Plugger is faking continued sleep, avoiding the plaintive-eyed leash-holding pet bear by the bed.

    /// Well, wouldn’t you?

  200. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:25 pm [Reply]

    @tb4000 (#93): The unbridled rage stems from the boy referring to Mary as Granny, and her decades long lack of offspring has taken its toll.

    Back in her “Apple Mary” days, Mary’s crippled grandson Dennie was a major player in the strip. So she must have had a son (or daughter) at one time.

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#125): That’s mighty high praise coming from you… thanks.

  201. Dennis Jimenez
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:27 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#157): His long-suffering spouse is Mrs. “Butters” Worth – she regularly attends Al Annon….

  202. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:31 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#200):
    I think a while back, the writer(s) indicated Mary had a son?

    Speaking of wayward relatives, where is Chad, Jeremy Duncan’s bro? We haven’t seen him or heard from him in ages.

    And, as per my usual rant … Bring back Chef Tito! Even if he’s dead! Hey, the (soon to be extinct) TV soaps do it : )

  203. Calico
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:37 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#164):
    The funny thing is that they seem very calm and collected.
    “A few mil lost/spent/embezzled/blown on drugs and nightclubs, ‘yawn’”
    They will make up for it when Abby goes on a walk with her platinum-encrusted hiking stick and pokes at what she thinks might be a measly gold nugget, but opens a new geyser/flow of sweet crude.

  204. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:40 pm [Reply]

    @Dood (#90): I hadn’t seen that until you mention it. Now I can’t unsee it.

    @Vince M (#112): Ugh. Tell me about it. It’s practically impossible to get a seat on a Ryanair plane to Edinburgh or Glasgow during the Cake Off Season due to all the Cake Chavs.

    @Hogenmogen (#129): You know, I’ve never seen “Antiques Roadshow” thinking it’d be boring. You’ve convinced me to give it a try next time I’m in its broadcast area.

  205. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:50 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#120): I don’t understand Wally’s quip in Dilbert.

    Short answer: The “Volstead Act” is the popular name for the National Prohibition Act (a/k/a Prohibition). The television series “Boardwalk Empire” takes place during Prohibition.

    More information can be found by looking up “18th Amendment,” “National Prohibition Act” and “Boardwalk Empire” on the internets.

  206. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:57 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#181): On the contrary, I would surmise that Mary is a grandmother already. It’s just that neither she nor her ne’er do well souse of a son knows about it.

  207. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:57 pm [Reply]

    MW: That heckler is the dumbest guy in the crowd. Given the physical appearance of the cake that John and Mary are carrying, would “Don’t drop it, Granny!” be even one of the first 100 or so insults you would come up with to hurl at it?

  208. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 2:58 pm [Reply]

    Mary contemplates her favorite quote from Dr. Albert “Seuss” Camus.

  209. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:04 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#136): That’s not the answer my circular slide rule says.

    @Freakin Hemingwad (#145): Oh. Ha ha ha.

    @Poteet (#152): Same here. I looked and looked. No mention of the long-lost son.

    @seismic-2 (#181): Really? That sounds like Dr. Corey’s son, the younger Dr. Corey.

    @Dood (#188): Hee hee.

    @Shrug: Life is Bruinal (#199): Ha ha!

    @Calico (#202): Chad’s playing basketball with Chuck Cunningham.

  210. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:05 pm [Reply]

    FW-Hello is appropriate because when someone dies in “Funky Winkerbean” their spirit never leaves whoever they’re attached to.

  211. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:07 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#209): “Chad’s playing basketball with Chuck Cunningham.”

    and took a bus to get there. . . .

  212. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:08 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#205): Oh. Thanks. “Boardwalk Empire” sounds to me like the playdowns for a Monopoly tournament.

  213. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:20 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#128): @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#102): Isn’t “fat free cream” an oxymoron?

    You mean like “jumbo shrimp”?

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#166): I find it a bit odd that Lio’s hellcat Cybil DOESN’T appear in Wednesday’s strip.

  214. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:25 pm [Reply]

    @Mikey (#192): More about Scott McCloud’s Zot:

  215. Northern lurker
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:25 pm [Reply]

    MW: so is the heckler the first known instance of a cake hooligan? No doubt he’s been swilling dessert wine for hours.

  216. Chip Whittle
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:28 pm [Reply]

    I for one am looking forward to the enraged Mary Worth losing her last shreds of self-control and turning into a giant, over-muscled, salmon-pink Hulk in shredded blouse and indestructible apron.

  217. AhClem
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:31 pm [Reply]

    @cheech wizard (#33):

    MW – So, in this country, we have trash-talking at cake decorating contests? I am so not telling my Euro soccer-fan friends about this. It would be…embarrassing.

    I’m waiting for the crowd to stand and start singing, “You’ll Never Bake Alone.”

  218. Gabacho
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:44 pm [Reply]

    @Poteet (#152): Bless you, Poteet! For years I have been holding on to this bit of useless information about Mary Worth’s son and never had anyone to share it with. His name is Warren Worth and he is a raging alcoholic (possibly an addict) who hides under the cover of a bon vivant. He’s always broke and ready to move on to the next big thing.

    Long before the Internet and the very last time I remember him being in the strip, Mary had decided to cut him off, possibly disinheriting him from her late husband Jack’s fortune, although I don’t remember that specifically – the disinheritance part. I know her husband was Jack. Warren has not been mentioned or shown in at least a decade and I think Karen Moy wants us to forget about him.

    But I remember Warren and now you, Poteet, will too.

  219. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:45 pm [Reply]

    RMMD: Is there a disturbance in the force?

    // I just love them little blue guys!

  220. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:48 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#213): Or “military intelligence”.

  221. PriceCheck
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:48 pm [Reply]

    If I don’t get to see May Worth throw that man into her and John’s ill-conceived pink waterfall cake and beat him into oblivion while the judges look on in horrified fascination, screaming all the while “DOES THIS FEEL LIKE A GRANNY TO YOU? DOES IT?”, I’m demanding my money back.

  222. I speak Jive
    February 6th, 2013 at 3:58 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#148): I just read that! Creepy and very well done. You’re not a twin, are you?

    FC – Knitting fail. Granny is holding her knitting needles upside down – the stitches would fall off the needles. A comic that prides itself on tradition should know this.

    I hope it’s permissible to refer to her as “Granny.” I wouldn’t want to have cake thrown at me.

  223. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:01 pm [Reply]

    @Northern lurker (#215): MW: so is the heckler the first known instance of a cake hooligan? No doubt he’s been swilling dessert wine for hours.

    Right, that’s what happens when the vendors in the bleachers sell souvenir cooking ingredients as refreshments. Yesterday, the hooligan got tired of snacking on hard-boiled eggs and started throwing them at the blue cake, as we saw. But now, after too much cooking sherry, he has bitten off more than he can chew. You do not want to make Mary angry, especially when she has a hand-held cake mixer within her arm’s length. Get ready to feel the whirling blades of justice, Mr. Loudmouth!

  224. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:07 pm [Reply]

    @Gabacho (#218): Ahhh, now it all falls into place. An anagram of “Warren Worth” is “Aldo Kelrast.” Oedipus, anyone?

    @PriceCheck (#221): That video would skyrocket to the top of YouTube’s top viewed videos. OK, it’d skyrocket to #2; the top video would be a calico cat trying to fit itself into a box of Special K.

  225. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:10 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#211): @Calico (#202): Chad’s playing basketball with Chuck Cunningham.

    That’s their cover story — Chad and Chuck are actually watching porn starring former child actress Jaimee Foxworth.

    What, you don’t remember Jaimee Foxworth?

    She played “Judy Winslow,” the youngest Winslow child on the television sitcom Family Matters. After the character of Steve Urkel (Jaleel White) was introduced, the producers decided to cut Foxworth’s part to the bone. At the end of FM’s fourth season, Foxworth and her character disappeared from the show.

    No explanation, no nothing. (It probably didn’t help that the actress had recently asked for a raise in salary…)

    Eventually, she started appearing in pornographic films, usually credited as “Crave.”

  226. Uncle Lumpy
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:21 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#225):

    Eventually, she started appearing in pornographic films, usually credited as “Crave.”

    I rented Crave ‘n’ the Hunter, but fell asleep halfway through.

  227. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:22 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#225): I have read that on one of the daytime soap operas back in the 1980s, a teenaged daughter was written out of the storyline by sending her up to the attic to get a pair of skis for a weekend trip. She simply never came back downstairs from the attic, and she was never again mentioned.

    What would the Bronte sisters have done with that plot, I wonder?

  228. A New Day
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:22 pm [Reply]

    Is the moral of this story really going to be “practice your cake transfers”? The realization that I expected more from Mary Worth: humbling, and a little bit terrifying.

  229. bitterlawstudent
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:25 pm [Reply]

    If John’s butterfingers don’t doom them first I’m pretty sure that cake has been undergoing some severe aeroelastic flutter and is about to destroy itself.

  230. Droopy Says
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:26 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#117): Someone has probably answered this by now, but the equation which relates height and time in a fall is h = 0.5a x t^2, where h is height, a is acceleration and t is time. In English units, h is feet and a is about 32 feet per second per second (or 9.81 m/sec^2). When t is one second, the square factors out easily, so height fallen becomes half of the acceleration. Now you know why I chose sixteen feet. (Speed is acceleration multiplied by time, so after one second the speed is 32 FPS.)

    Actually Spiderdick’s hammock is probably closer to the ground. The equation for time is the square root of (twice the height over acceleration), so at ten feet he has about 0.8 seconds before he hits the ground. Make it eight feet and he’ll hit in (one over root two) or about 0.7 seconds, proportionatly reducing the time he has to scream in fear.

    (One basic laws of physics is “Any equation can be made fun by inserting Peter Parker into it.” Metric Mudges can double their pleasure by converting from English units.)

  231. Jilliterate
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:27 pm [Reply]

    MW: Whoa, Mary, that kind of aggression isn’t tolerated at Cake-Off. Maybe at some sort of competition using mixed nuts, like a Marzipan Match or a Fudge Festival, but not here, in the deliciously repressed world of Cake-Off.

  232. Vince M
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:37 pm [Reply]

    MW is reminding me vividly of a Gahan Wilson drawing in the National Lampoon, where medical advancements were making elderly people a rare curiosity, showing up in sideshows and performing ‘stunts’ like climbing stairs to a jeering audience.

  233. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:44 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#204): Antiques Roadshow IS boring. I didn’t say that I watched it, just my friend. I saw one or two bits with him, and most was pretty ordinary stuff. The only thing that interested me was this guy who had an antique sword appraised at $50,000. “Really? When I was a kid, we used it to hack watermelons to bits!”

    Watching some dainty Englishman give fine praise to the object du jour is sort of like watching an upscale Home Shopping Network. What I really wanted to see was hacking watermelons with a Civil War ceremonial sword, because that would be cool.

  234. Droopy Says
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:48 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#136): Another interesting bit of Spiderphysics is “How fast does he move when he swings at the end of a line?” Say Spiderdick stands atop a skyscraper, and the next building is 120 feet away. If he fwips his fweb to a point at his height, then swings, his speed is still controlled by the force of gravity. The line just converts his velocity vector from vertical to horizontal. So for a swing of 120 feet, he’s doing 88 fps when he slams into the wall at the bottom of the arc. (Unless he can attach a new web to the side of another building, and pull himself to the side. But he’s still doing 88 fps at the bottom of that swing, and he’s got to lose that energy either by hitting a wall or letting gravity bleed it off during an ascent. The wall is the prefered solution.)

    As for “How fast does Peter Parker fall when he swings in San Francisco,” I wish Dingo were here . . .

  235. Baka Gaijin
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:48 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#233): Way to burst my bubble. I already made reservations at The Four Seasons. The reservationist assured me their TV’s show this program. Damn. What am I going to do this weekend?

  236. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:51 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#203): You have to understand their position. Neddy is a member of the Sam Driver Pretty People Posse. She can do no wrong. “Do you think she’s on drugs?” Without a nanosecond’s worth of pause: “ABSOLUTELY NOT.”

    Neddy has obviously found a great business opportunity and is investing heavily. Abbey and Sam are just checking to see if they can also get in on the ground floor.

    Or, Neddy is hiring a team of Pakistanis to do her homework so she can snort coke in Eurotrash nightclubs.

  237. Hogenmogen
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:54 pm [Reply]

    SM: Why didn’t Parker’s hammock stick to his clothes?

  238. demoncat
    February 6th, 2013 at 4:57 pm [Reply]

    mw neither do i as after managing to get her and johns cake to the table in one piece mary leaped into the audience and open up a can of whoop ass on the heckler who soon learned the hard way never to tick off mary worth .

  239. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:01 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#230): Thank you for your clear yet compendious explanation! I was afraid I wouldn’t learn anything today, and wouldn’t that have been a “horrid, horrible, and horridest horror!”*?

    The next time I inadvertently fall from an dirigible, or, in a fit of pique, jump from a skyscraper, I shall whip out my trusty Albert Nestler slipstick, (Model 29a, System Rietz, as favored by Albert Einstein and Wernher Von Braun), and calculate the moment of my impact with confidence!

    *As Aldiborontiphoscophornio put in so well Chrononhotonthologos.

  240. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:03 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#239): *As Aldiborontiphoscophornio put it so well in Chrononhotonthologos.

    // Must remember to preview my footnotes!

  241. Jim in Wisc.
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:08 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worthless: Dear, lord! This comic is so unintentionally hilarious!! And today’s strip perfectly sums up why: The “artists” don’t know anything about ratio or perspective; the coloring is awful (the palette is limited to a narrow range of shades of about three colors); and the storylines are ludicrous.

  242. Shrug, Saying "Don't Look Under the Tarp"
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:12 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#209):

    “Chad’s playing basketball with Chuck Cunningham.”

    ,,,on a farm in upstate New York, where they can run and play all day…

  243. Shrug (You Might Want to Wait for the DVD)
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    @Chip Whittle (#216):

    In a world where sweet sugary gamma rays threaten all of pinkish nature, one woman answers the call for a Meddling Messiah:

    “Don’t frost me . . . you wouldn’t LIKE me when I get frosted…”

    Mary Worth IS the Inedible Bulk! Coming soon to a pool party near you!

  244. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:19 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#233): I only watch Antiques Roadshow for the occasional times where an appraiser will say something like: “This painting is worthless crap valued less than Velvet Elvis playing poker with dogs. The frame, however, was worth $2 million, until you broke it to get the painting out.”

    For me, its akin to NASCAR — watching it only for the crashes.

  245. bats :[
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:22 pm [Reply]

    Okay, so I’m late to the party, but I brought cake!

  246. Jim in Wisc.
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:27 pm [Reply]

    Mary’s Still Worthless: Comics Kingdom has actually posted a recolored version of yesterday’s strip. The dropped cake is now white with pink trimming, where it was blue-grey when first posted (see the strip in Josh’s post from yesterday).

  247. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:44 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#195): That’s a sweet story, Calico — and I mean that in the best possible way.

    I have an older half-brother somewhere, but the chances of me tracking him down are practically nil. The woman who gave birth to him was married at the time (but not to my father). I don’t know if she ever told her husband about the affair, so he may have been led to believe that HE was the biological father.

    Unfortunately, my father never named any names before he passed away years ago — and no one in his family has any idea who this woman might have been.

  248. Alison
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:49 pm [Reply]

    “Mary Worth”: Yelling at someone that you hope they *don’t* mess up is the most mild heckling ever. Also, the heckler seems to be insinuating that Mary is especially old for this event. Are we to believe that most of the people who show up at a cake decorating contest in some small-town community building are a bunch of teenagers and/or college students? Right, young people just love that kind of stuff.

    “Luann”: Yeah Brad, you are a very mature sort of person, the kind of person who gets a laugh out of his idiot friend blackmailing your ex-boss for no real reason. That is very mature. You are totally above a cute pun.

  249. Peanut Gallery
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:58 pm [Reply]

    @Weaselboy (#37): He’s just baiting us.

  250. Ratiocinator
    February 6th, 2013 at 5:59 pm [Reply]

    9CL: This is why we play pianos with our fingers and NOT our hair, boys and girls.

    Garfield: “My owner has a very low tolerance for pain, and apparently they call him ‘the screamer’ at the dentist. For some reason I thought this was worth blogging about.”

    JP: Thus far, Abbey’s tactic of holding the stuffed pig hostage in order to extract information from Sophie appears to be working.

    RMMD: My God! Delores’ cancer has given her superpowers!!!

  251. tallyHO
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:00 pm [Reply]

    I haven’t been following the FW story with rapt attention.

    Isn’t the blond guy supposed to be the son of Lisa, Les’ first wife? So, is the guy Les’ son, too?

    Or, did I just misread something sometime ago that explained who the parent of the blond guy is/was?

  252. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:04 pm [Reply]

    Better Half-”We figured it would be less physically demanding if we spend the rest of our lives taking little potshots at each other than to get a divorce and start dating other people.”

    MW-”Granny? I’ve never even been with another man.”

  253. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:04 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#245): Most excellent, as usual bats :[ !!

  254. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:07 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#251): Darrin is Lisa’s son. She got pregnant in high school by some doofus from Big Valley Tech (who apparently date-raped her). Les, by golly, was a virgin that day he married St. Lisa.

  255. bats :[
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:13 pm [Reply]

    @Jim in Wisc. (#246): how bizarre! Why do suppose that happened? Does King Features actually give a rat’s patoot about snarky comments, maybe not posted here, but associated with several other sites that publish their strips?

  256. Dale
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:16 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#230):

    Does this law of physics mean Peter Parker can be used as a fudge factor?

  257. Midtown
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:23 pm [Reply]

    Today’s conversation-stopper phrases: (hope you were able to use at least one)

    helium overcoat — forklift jousting in the warehouse — lint: it’s all the rage — going paleo — owl be yours —no news is good snooze — don’t drop it, Granny — rolos tuesday

  258. tallyHO
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:30 pm [Reply]

    @Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol (#254):

    I didn’t know that.

    So, does this Darrin know who is mother was?

  259. Ratiocinator
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:31 pm [Reply]

    @LUJBEM FEJF (#36):

    Mary Mary- So, why again is Mary baking a cake with Mr. Whipple?

    I don’t know, but at least we know why she is buggin’.

  260. mr12ozcan
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:32 pm [Reply]

    mary worth – if there was a third panal it would have shown a large foam finger stuffed up the hecklers ass which uncle joe forgot to draw in panal one . how can you be a fan of competive cake baking without a large foam finger . nice icing granny

  261. Zerowolf
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:41 pm [Reply]

    MW: I figured cake contest hecklers would chant, “No batter, no batter, no batter.”

  262. Dale
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:45 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#234):

    88 fps may sound like a lot, but it’s only 60 mph. It would be less if you used nautical miles.

  263. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:55 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#234): When calculating the motion of Spiderman, it is necessary to use Newtonian mechanics rather than Lagrangian or Hamiltonian mechanics. The reason is that the latter two formulations of a body’s motion are based on energy, and in the case of Peter Parker, the energy has a constant value of zero.

  264. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 6:57 pm [Reply]

    A3G-”Don’t worry your friend is in a wonderful place without any pain. She’s pumped full of painkillers.”

    Baby Blues-You mean they don’t call him ‘The Breaker’ in preparation for his future career in organized crime where he’ll break people’s legs for money.

    Beetle Bailey-The Army is so desperate for troops in Afghanistan that they are sending Camp Swampy over there.

    Gasoline Alley-”One ring to rule them. One ring to find them all. One ring to bind them all.”

    Hagar-”If you want to be filled come back to my place and I’ll fill you.”

    Lockhorns-Another year older. Another year still married to Loretta.

    RMMD-”I can smell pregnancy like bears can smell women menstruating.”

    Curtis-”Dad, likes to cuddle and I just want to roll over and go to sleep.”

  265. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:02 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#258): Yep — Darrin loses his virginity, then goes to the post office (where he had a secret box) to check his mail. He gets the mail that Lisa is his mother, and he goes to see her just before she dies.

    I wish I were making this up.

  266. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:04 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#264): Beetle Bailey-The Army is so desperate for troops in Afghanistan that they are sending Camp Swampy over there.

    But, apparently not so desperate that they’ll send Cory Winkerbean over there.

  267. Droopy Says
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:06 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#263): Everyday mechanics is more suited to Peter Parker–a hit over the head with a monkey wrench might work wonders with him. Or a socket wrench, or a ball peen hammer, or whatever else is in the tool kit. I’m not averse to experimentation here.

  268. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:07 pm [Reply]

    FW-”Don’t worry if Dad dies he’ll be like my birth mother and never leave us. Seriously why does she constantly have to follow me everywhere I go. I can’t even masturbate without her looking over my shoulder.”

  269. Droopy Says
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:09 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#240): I’ve tried preview. I end up trading one typo for another. Apparently there’s a conservation law involving typos and myopia.

  270. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:11 pm [Reply]

    Hagar-It was at this point that Luck Eddie decided to convert Hagar to Christianity.

  271. tallyHO
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:14 pm [Reply]

    @Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol (#265):

    She is controlling his life from beyond the…oh…she was still alive at the time?

    I see. Now I know too much.

    For a while when the current storyline started, it seemed like that older couple was an older version of the couple that lives with the Crankshaft (son/daughter of Crank?).

    I guess they aren’t because the surname isn’t the same.


    It is a good thing the strip isn’t a must read for me. Like Chubby Checker, there’s too many twists and turns…yet it seems to stay in one place:

    Funky Town.

  272. Liam
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:15 pm [Reply]

    MW-Sadly the heckler couldn’t get tickets to the Paint Drying Competition or the Grass Growing Competition since they were already sold out.

  273. Fashion Police
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:39 pm [Reply]

    We suspect that Miss Paige will also be crushed when she learns that not only is she not a member of Sly and the Family Stone, but that the band broke up about the time her parents were born.

  274. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:51 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#245): Laser mash!

  275. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:54 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#267): It is a good bet that whatever tool you choose as the implement for hitting Peter Parker over the head, it will not be detected by “Spider Sense”.

  276. Nehemiah Scudder
    February 6th, 2013 at 7:56 pm [Reply]

    @Dale (#262): Yeah, but it’s almost a hundred kph!

    // Yay metric!

  277. The Ridger
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:04 pm [Reply]

    @Alison (#248): According to all the pre-competition strips, one of John’s biggest fears was that he was too old, that cake-decorating was a young person’s game, and that all the other competitors would run rings around his retired, aged, saggy ass with their springy young legs, doubtless balancing their cakes in their strong young hands and laughing maniacally at him with their young voices. So yes, we are supposed to think that all the other competitors are young. But John and Mary will NOT drop their cake and they WILL triumph. I have faith in them!

  278. The Ridger
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    What I want to know is how did Peter get closer to San Francisco while riding on a truck going the wrong way?

  279. mary_worthless
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#24): yet….aren’t they one and the same??

  280. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:11 pm [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#277): He will triumph! John will triumph! And he will fullfill his dream as the ‘Manager of Dessert Carrying Presenters’ at the Santa Royale Marie Callendar’s, which is much more imressive than being a Hotel Manager. Did you know he’s a retired Hotel Manager?

  281. Mr. O'Malley
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:15 pm [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#278): Presumably he goes south-west on I-15 to Barstow, swings northwest on 58 to Bakersfield, and then north on I-5. I-5 doesn’t go to San Francisco, so he’ll have to switch again when he gets closer.

  282. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:15 pm [Reply]

    @Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol (#265): @tallyHO (#258): Yep — Darrin loses his virginity, then goes to the post office (where he had a secret box) to check his mail. He gets the mail that Lisa is his mother, and he goes to see her just before she dies.

    I wish I were making this up.

    Dar-Dar losing his virginity to a secret box* sounds normal for a character in Funky Winkerbean. Although I’m surprised a huge Jack “King” Kirby fanboy like Tommy B didn’t call it a Mother Box in the story.

    *Is that what the kids are calling it these days?

  283. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:23 pm [Reply]

    I just read something interesting. All Little Nemo strips have apparently (or so I’m told) entered the public domain. And they’re all (so they say) right here.

  284. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:26 pm [Reply]

    MW: Back on January 21, Toby tried to get Mary prepared for what was in store when she remarked, “I saw the contest on local TV last year, and all the contestants seemed so young! Are you nervous?” She should have added, in her best Clint Eastwood sneer, “Well, are you,… GRANNY???”

  285. Jim in Wisc.
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:26 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#255): I’m not sure, but I was thinking the same thing you were. It’d be kind of funny – in a sad way – if that was the case.

  286. commodorejohn
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:30 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#283): Hot damn. Archive binge, here I come!

  287. Rocky Stoneaxe
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:40 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#283): Any idea why Little Nemo has entered the public domain, but The Katzenjammer Kids still belongs to King Features? (The latter strip has been running since December 12, 1897!)

  288. Ratiocinator
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:08 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#267): Oh, people have tried it a lot. Just look at this blog’s archives! Unfortunately, it never seems to do any good. (Where “do some good” can mean either “making him a better character to read about”, “making him die”, or some combination thereof.)

  289. Ratiocinator
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:08 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#268): Haha, don’t be silly. She’s too busy watching Les masturbate.

  290. Ratiocinator
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:10 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#271):

    Funky Town.

    Won’t you please, please, please never take me to that town?

  291. Sgt. Stoned
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:13 pm [Reply]

    MW: Mary’s eyes roll upward in their sockets as her clothing begins to rip and Mary is transformed into a huge, green monstrosity shouting at the audience, “Don’t make me angry, punks! You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry!”

  292. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:24 pm [Reply]

    Late to the comics and comments, but I’m just wondering two things:
    Is Mary really going to kick some cake-heckler ass, perhaps by crab-walking close enough to the stands, still holding the cake, and kicking off her shoe so a sensible heel lodges itself in the cake-heckler’s eye socket?

    And just how much of the hospital’s pharmaceutical supply has Tommie consumed before starting her shift in the ER?

    Oh, and I guess a third:
    Is Catfish kind of a dick, or is he just having the normal anti-Rusty reaction?

  293. The Right Venerable Pasdordan
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:25 pm [Reply]

    I’ve been too busy to be around much this week, but wanted to mention that I dropped my mail key in a puddle this afternoon and promptly cried out, “NOOO!!! THAT WAS A SUGAR-BASED KEY!!!”

    Comics Curmudgeon: riffing on existential dread and anxiety and providing real-world applications since 2004.

  294. Sequitur
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:41 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#283): That first one of Little Nemo in Slumberland looks more like a Baka Gaijin nightmare.

  295. Sequitur
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:44 pm [Reply]

    @The Right Venerable Pasdordan (#293): And was there anyone around to hear you? Some Spiderdude in civilian clothes, maybe?

  296. Artist formerly known as Ben
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:46 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#213): Well Cybil is presumably the reason Lio is opening the can to begin with. She’s off-panel so as not to share the spotlight, perhaps?

  297. Sequitur
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:51 pm [Reply]

    Slowly I turn. Step by step… and then I bump into a Ripleys!

    An adult hippopotamus cannot swim or even float!

    Insert mother-in-law joke here:




  298. bats :[
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:52 pm [Reply]

    What concerns me (and I do worry about our Mary) is that none of her so-called friends are in the audience to thump hecklers or just plain cheer her on. That just doesn’t seem right (if for no other reason than what else is there to do in Santa Royale but hang around a free event and hope for some free food).
    Then again, it might be a big convention center…

  299. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 9:55 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#296): despite the 4 to 1 odds, my $$ is on Cybil.

    Mooch is no fighter, Bill is just shy of comatose as a general rule, Garfield is out of shape, and we all know Bucky is all talk and no game.

    and that’s before Cybil breaks out the heavy artillery.

    now, Cybil vs Guard Duck? THAT is a match I’d PPV.

  300. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:17 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#181): @Gabacho (#218): Thank you both!! Not only will I remember Warren, but I’ll probably think of him at odd moments, like every single time Mary finds another meddle-victim (assuming she doesn’t stab the Granny-yeller and end up in the pokey for a couple of decades). I’ll think about what it would be like to be Mary’s child (gaaah) and how much likkering-up it would take to get through a visit with her (gaaah) and how many salmon squares Warren might have had to consume over the decades (gaaah). This adds a whole new dimension to MW. Thanks again! (I think.)

  301. Majicou
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:18 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#233): There used to be a show on the History Channel, and then maybe moved to the Military Channel, called Mail Call, hosted by R. Lee Ermey. Gunny would answer viewer mail, usually in the most spectacular manner feasible–and watermelons were a staple.

  302. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:20 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#287): I’m guessing that the Katzenjammers have been renewed from time to time. It’s only a guess.

    In other news, anybody ever read the Time-Life volume on The Mind and have the image of the self-portrait that Canadian guy did of his skull cut open, and there’s a maze inside with a dead rat at the center of it? That was William Kurelek, about whom more can be found on the internet (like the name of the painting, “The Maze” and the fact that part of it was used for a Van Halen album). Turns out the Niagara Falls Gallery has quite a bit of his stuff, so now I have another place to go look at art when I get a chance. I also have to detour through KC, MO one day so I can see “Still Life with Death,” aka “The Dust is Whirling in the Dust,” by Arthur Kraft, another painting that I obsessed on some in my life.

  303. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:23 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#298): BWAHAHA! The red eyes are such a great extra.

  304. Mikey
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:24 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#298): bats :[ , I hate to give you suggestions, but, can you eventually do a mash that replaces the name “Charlie Brown” with “Peter Parker” from the first Peanuts strip. (Charles Schultz please forgive me but I own all your books)? The world has been waiting…and deserves justice!

  305. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:25 pm [Reply]

    ps on Little Nemo: Notice the link above the comic to the larger size image. Just in case you didn’t already.

  306. Peanut Gallery
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:28 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#287): Apparently the current copyright term for creations of a single author is “life of the author plus 70 years.” McCay died in 1934, so Little Nemo went into the public domain in 2005.

    Rudolph Dirks created Katzenjammer Kids and drew it until 1912. He died in 1968. If those strips fall under the above rule, they would remain under copyright until 2038.

    Harold Knerr drew the strip from 1912 until his death in 1949, so those could theoretically become public domain in 2019, but I don’t know if that’s altered by the fact that Dirks created the characters.

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#302): And of course, there may be stratagems the heirs can use to effectively reset the clock on the copyright.

  307. The Right Venerable Pasdordan
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:35 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#295): I wasn’t in the middle of a freeway outside Tahoe, you know.

  308. Poteet
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:46 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#302): Yes, my parents had that book and some of the artwork is embedded in my brain, including “The Maze.” I just looked it up again and it seems more amazing and disturbing now than it did back then.

  309. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    February 6th, 2013 at 10:48 pm [Reply]

    @Majicou (#301): hooo-RAH!

  310. Rulesofenragement
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:00 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worth: What kind of person heckles at a cake decorating competition? Do the cool hecklers at open mic nights steal his milk money or something?

  311. The Right Venerable Pasdordan
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:13 pm [Reply]

    @Rulesofenragement (#310): If you’re:
    •Between the ages of 45 and 95
    •Have a loud voice and poor executive control
    •Frequently wet the bed
    •Don’t mind having your ass handed to you by “Granny”

    You might be ready for an exciting new career as a Cake Championship Heckler!

    Call now! Operators are standing by to tell you how to fork over enormous wads of government loans!!

  312. Dartpaw86
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:15 pm [Reply]

    Seeing how freakishly high the table is compared to John, and the weird lines around John and Mary. I can only assume John and Mary are shrinking.

  313. Der Kömmëntätör, Herr Schnärkïnätör
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:19 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#298):

    Red pupils – Nice touch!

  314. tallyHO
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:20 pm [Reply]

    @Rulesofenragement (#310):
    What kind of person heckles at a cake decorating competition?

    A laid-off Hostess Cupcake baker.

    Let’s just hope he keeps it clean and doesn’t brag too much.

    It would be a drag if he shouted things like,
    “I’ve frosted more DingDongs than you can shake a leg at, old man!”
    “In my division they know I kick so much snack cake ass, they call me Jean Claude Fon Dant!”

    That would likely rattle Mary and John Dill(inger, pickle and pistol packer).

  315. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:21 pm [Reply]

    @Rocky Stoneaxe (#287), @Peanut Gallery (#306): In the USA, copyright law gets extended every time that Mickey Mouse gets ready to enter the public domain, basically. However, there’s another important consideration: trademark. The copyright on “Popeye” is about to expire in the UK, but King Features (which holds the trademark there) will so vigorously enforce how the character can be used that the copyright expiration won’t make much difference, from a practical point of view.

    Caveat – I’m not a lawyer, and I don’t even play one on TV.

  316. tallyHO
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:28 pm [Reply]

    @Dartpaw86 (#312):
    There’s only one explanation for that:

    It is all a part of John’s nefarious plan to wed Mary before a live studio audience and atop a cake, a beautifully, pink, frosted cake.

    That little pink version of Mary…a stand-in for the Real McCoy. I mean, the Real Mary!

  317. tallyHO
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:38 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#315):

    I wouldn’t dress up like a lawyer at a Halloween party. So, take this with a grain of salt.

    It could be as simple as the “Little Nemo” comic strips are in the Public Domain. And, the characters are up for grabs, too. For reasons already given. But, it is an important distinction that if the strips are PD then anyone can republish them.
    Those Katzenjammer strips from the same period and before are probably PD, too. So they could be republished. But, no one can just make new strips or reuse any after a certain date. Whatever cut off year that is is probably where King Features picks up the rights.

    In theory, each passing year would allow more to fall into PD. But, like you note, every time anything Mickey Mouse is up for PD, the law is changed. So, who knows.

    But, there should be a large amount of printed material (before 1926?) that is in the PD. The date may be sooner or later than that one. I forget. There’s plenty of sites which have the current cut off date though, and more info than I can provide.

  318. seismic-2
    February 6th, 2013 at 11:53 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#317): If God could afford as large and as aggressive a legal staff as the Walt Disney Corp. employs, the Bible would still be under copyright.

  319. Dave Dahl
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:06 am [Reply]

  320. Poteet
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:14 am [Reply]

    MW — “And now please excuse me for a moment, John. I’ll be back right after I use my laser vision to fry that heckler into a large hunk of bacon.”

  321. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:27 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#318): God could just create a team of lawyers, if He weren’t so busy making sure the right teams win sporting events.

  322. Der Kömmëntätör, Herr Schnärkïnätör
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:36 am [Reply]

    @Dave Dahl (#319):

    Boring? Your call. Fucking lame, my call…

  323. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:37 am [Reply]

    John Dill: What? There wasn’t even a contest in True Grit! It was more like..Karate Kid, except with cakes instead of karate, and old people instead of a kid! It wasn’t ANYTHING like True Grit!

  324. Poteet
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:38 am [Reply]

    S-M — Oh look, San Francisco is empty. Obviously word got around about the new visitor.

  325. Baka Gaijin
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:39 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#294): Thanks for the warning.

    @bats :[ (#298): Good one!

    @The Right Venerable Pasdordan (#311): I can just imagine that commercial on late-night TV.

  326. Poteet
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:41 am [Reply]

    GA — Rufus makes Quasimodo look like Apollo.

  327. tallyHO
    February 7th, 2013 at 12:46 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#318): @Gladly, the cross-eyed bear (#321):

    You’re both probably right.
    When I wrote the above bit, I should have clarified that the Katzenjammer characters probably are still under copyright, and that the strip is still under copyright. The distinction I badly tried to describe is that the “works” in the form of the pre-1926 comic strips are PD, while the ones post-1926 are not PD.

    So, the detail is the fact that the previously published strips AND the characters are both copyright protected BUT not ALL of the previously published strips still have protection.

    With “Little Nemo”–a person could probably make new strips using the characters and even base those on existing strips. Actually, an animator, Bill Plympton, remade a Windsor McCay animated cartoon. Last year, actually.

    Also, those old Fleischer animated Superman cartoons are PD. What I am not sure of is if they can only be redistributed and sold or if they could be remade using the existing characters. I kind of doubt the latter is true. You probably could remake them using slightly different characters though.

    @Dave Dahl (#319): @Poteet (#320):

    You’re probably right, too. Mary still has an ace up her sleeve. What pray tell could it be? Vengence? Forgiveness? A homily? A cookie? Heat Vision? A “Carrie” impersonation?

  328. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    February 7th, 2013 at 1:05 am [Reply]

    John Dill: Or Bring it On, Drumline, or even a sports movie! For God’s sake, Mary, there are literally thousands of movies more appropriate than True Grit! How is this anything like True Grit?

    Mary: In the sense that I’m going to gut-shoot that heckler and watch him die.

  329. bats :[
    February 7th, 2013 at 1:28 am [Reply]

  330. Droopy Says
    February 7th, 2013 at 1:52 am [Reply]

    Spiderdick: The place hasn’t looked this dead since On The Beach, which makes sense. Peter Parker is about as welcome as a nuclear attack.

    Squicky Ickybean: And with the start of Estranger in Estrange Land, Batiuk stakes a claim on turf that even McEch won’t touch.

    Family Circus: Kerry? Dullwood? Let this be a warning to you. A sisterly hand on the brotherly leg leads to melonheads.

    Mary Mirthless: True grit? Won’t the judges deduct points for that?

    Phantom: And of course, the local village sits atop the richest deposit of unobtainium in the world.

    Pluggers: is also known as Zambolcan (in the Bandar tongue).

    Mock Travail: Meanwhile, Rusty is going to distract himself by photographing the misshappen yet addly happy man with the baglike tackle box. The resulting pictures will confuse Trail and make Cherry ask Doc to speak with Rusty.

    Shoe: This is what happens when a business conglomerate takes over the media: the press ignores the breaking story about cannibalism.

  331. Majicou
    February 7th, 2013 at 1:57 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#318): Once, Heaven and Hell met and agreed on the construction of the Trans-Afterlife Highway. They signed a contract to share the costs of construction and upkeep between them equally. One day, God noticed that the highway was in a state of severe disrepair. He called over one of his attending angels and said: “Take a letter. ‘Satan: You have not been paying your share of the maintenance for the highway. Be advised that if you do not remit payment within seven days, we will be forced to pursue legal action.” And the angel sent the letter off. The next day, a reply arrived from Hell reading: “Legal action? And just where are YOU going to find a lawyer?”

    // Lawyer jokes are, for the most part, inherently lazy. I still laugh.

  332. Mr. O'Malley
    February 7th, 2013 at 5:05 am [Reply]

    Copyright is rather complicated since in the early 20th century it was 28 years, renewable once if the author is still alive. Now it is the life of the author plus 70 years. How it applies to works created in the in-between period is complex. Also the answer is different if it is a “work made for hire”. In the case of the creator of a strip, the rights probably belong to the creator, but if someone is hired to continue the strip, it may be a work made for hire and the rights would belong to the syndicate.

    Just a few years ago the RIAA bribed* a Congressional law clerk to insert language in a bill coming up to vote, reclassifying all recordings made for major record labels as works made for hire. The bill passed (nobody reads bills after they come out of committee) and all recording artists immediately lost all rights to their own work. It took a major lobbying effort by musicians to reverse the law.

    A trademark remains in effect as long as it is in use. I don’t know if comic strip characters are trademarked, but the names of the strips might be, because you can’t copyright a title.

    In reference to the Katzenjammer Kids, the original artist, Rudolph Dirks, left the Hearst organization, which hired another artist, Harold Knerr, to continue the strip, on the basis of the original contract. Dirks began drawing another strip with the same characters, The Captain and the Kids. After a court battle, the settlement was that both strips would continue. Dirks died in 1968 and his son John continued the strip until 1979. The Katzenjammer Kids is still running through King Features.

    Dirks licensed his characters to MGM for a series of cartoon films in 1938. In the 1970s both strips produced versions for television, neither very successfully.

    The tricky part is should a work be covered by the copyright law in effect when it was created, or should changes to copyright law be retroactive? (Answer here.) Dirks started the strip in 1897. Thus the strips from the early years would be public domain, which means that you can reproduce them freely.

    More recent versions of the strip are still copyrighted, so that prevents you from
    -reproducing them without permission, except for fair use
    -producing derivative works such as your own strips with those characters, Hans and Fritz dolls, etc.

    Fair use includes purposes of review and parody.

    Please note that I am not a lawyer, so you can read anything I write without receiving a bill** but it may not be correct.

    *as in, he quit his job and immediately stepped into a very well-paid executive position with the RIAA. Not bribery in a legal sense, probably.

    **old joke: For seeing you out walking, and crossing the street to greet you, and discovering it was someone else: $150.

  333. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    February 7th, 2013 at 5:43 am [Reply]

    Pibgorn: Oh, no, you don’t get off that easy, McE. The real Scheherazade put her own life at risk to save those others. Your immortal succubus was in no such danger, and, as such, remains a pale and there insulting imitation of the real thing.

  334. parcheesi
    February 7th, 2013 at 5:56 am [Reply]

    Looking at the Mary Worth preceding this one again, it almost looks like someone is knocking that cake onto the ground, which makes Mary’s steely determination much more understandable and dramatic.

  335. Mr. O’Malley
    February 7th, 2013 at 5:57 am [Reply]

    If you really want, here is a more detailed answer. You can see why there is a need for lawyers. At a certain point, most people would prefer to pay someone else to read this stuff.

  336. LP2004
    February 7th, 2013 at 6:10 am [Reply]

    MW: Well, that’s disappointing. After yesterday’s ‘Take no prisoners’ second panel, I was really looking forward to seeing Mary going seriously medieval on that heckler, with artwork at least as great as that for the opening fusillade of the Gunfight At The SanRoyMart Corral.

  337. CanuckDownSouth
    February 7th, 2013 at 7:08 am [Reply]

    FW: I’m trying to ignore the horrid actions of Darrin’s parents, who both knew about this sibling and helped alienate Darrin from her by concealing her existence to ask what’s up with step-siblings here. Darrin is the child of Fred + woman#2. She is the child of Fred + woman#1. That makes them half-siblings. Stepsibs, like step-parents, are brought together as family by marriage. Is FW denigrating Darrin as an adoptee, reserving “half-sibling” for the genetic relationship?

  338. gleeb
    February 7th, 2013 at 7:09 am [Reply]

    ‘bean: Even with a whiff of implied incestuous desire, this is too dull. Maybe it’s because the author doesn’t actually explain anything about why this character was estranged from her father for 40 years or so.

    Beetle: Sarge and Beetle want to hide the fact that they are stoned to the bejesus.

    Sophie’s Mail Call: Neddie has a modern art monkey on her back, and it’s got to be fed!

    Thorp: The cult of The Peacock spreads!\

    Spidey: Every point in San Francisco has a view of the Golden Gate bridge. It’s true, just like every point in Paris has a view of the Eiffel Tower and every point in Baltimore has a view of an alley-dwelling rat.

  339. Little Guy
    February 7th, 2013 at 7:23 am [Reply]

    @Mikey (#304): “Peter Parker, you Webhead!”

    It works.

  340. Peanut Gallery
    February 7th, 2013 at 8:02 am [Reply]

    @Mr. O’Malley (#332), @Mr. O’Malley (#335): Thanks, that’s some great info!

    @seismic-2 (#315), @tallyHO (#327): I’ve often heard about the Mickey Mouse copyright principle, and that was what drove me to look up some of this stuff in Wikipedia when Rocky raised the question. According to Wikipedia’s info, The Mouse is covered under the “corporate authorship” or “works made for hire” rules, which currently means 1928 plus 95 years (2023) for Steamboat Willie. Presumably it’ll be extended again, but maybe there’s a chance that the term for non-works-for-hire won’t be. And as a number of people have noted, Mickey Mouse the character is also a trademark, which means Disney can protect it threaten to sue people’s asses off in perpetuity regardless of what happens to the earliest copyrights.

  341. Dr. Tongue's 3d House of Horrors
    February 7th, 2013 at 11:13 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth is such a GILF.

  342. Mad Monkey
    February 8th, 2013 at 1:15 am [Reply]

    I like how genuinely enraged Mary Worth looks in this panel, to be honest. The last time she looked like that, Captain Kangaroo broken corpse was found at the bottom of a ravine. That poor heckler is going to envy his fate though after Mary gets done with his sorry ass.

  343. Dartpaw86
    February 9th, 2013 at 12:56 am [Reply]

    Wait, it that Heckler supposed to be Josh? He looks a little like the cartoon at the top of the page (I never actually saw a photo of him so I’m going by that alone)

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