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Avast, swabs, prepare for whimsy!

Heathcliff, 8/2/13

People, I have been terribly remiss in not informing you about an amazing live performance that you can see if you live in or near Baltimore! It is a water ballet based on Moby Dick, and it is being put on by Fluid Movement, the wacky Baltimore performance art troupe that I am occasionally affiliated with. I’m not in the show this year, but my lovely wife is, and I’ve seen the performance and it’s fantastic. There are shows at 5 and 7 p.m. this coming Saturday and Sunday nights at Baltimore’s Patterson Park pool. Behold the amazing poster!

You can buy tickets here and find out more information here and maybe see/say hi to me because I’ll be volunteering in some capacity. I can’t believe it has taken a Heathcliff cartoon to prod me into promoting it here! For real, though, I’ve known people who have performed in peg legs and Heathcliff’s is pretty hardcore. Based on the leg we can see, it’s clearly not something hollow that he’s stuffing his leg into. Is he walking about with his leg uncomfortably strapped behind his back? Or did he actually amputate his leg, just to pull off a flawless sight gag that barely impresses our fish merchant? He might’ve. Heathcliff doesn’t do things by half measures. Heathcliff keeps it real.

Apartment 3-G, 8/2/13

Hey, remember when this Apartment 3-G plot was going to be about the psychological trauma that combat vets face when they return to civilian life, and that could’ve been timely and important but they could have also screwed it up pretty badly? Well, now it’s about brain tumors. Can’t go wrong with brain tumors, right?

Mark Trail, 8/2/13

I am of course duty-bound by my Comics Summarizer’s Oath to let you know when violence breaks out in Mark Trail, so here you go! We all know Mark traditionally wears pants that are too short, which becomes pretty obvious when he kicks someone, but instead of wearing khaki socks like usual today he’s just showing off his sexy bare ankles, the tease.

Spider-Man, 8/2/13

Ever since Spidey’s daring/cowardly escape from his plane, much of his time in Costa Verde has been taken up by him loudly remarking to nobody in particular that he doesn’t speak the local language. This will definitely make him beloved when he meets up with his allies! There’s nothing Latin American revolutionaries like more than being shouted at in English.

Wizard of Id, 8/2/13

I guess the Wizard of Id takes place in some pseudo-medieval era when even the basics of rudimentary statescraft were poorly understood, but still: ethics and accounting are not the same thing, guys!

195 responses to “Avast, swabs, prepare for whimsy!”

  1. Mr. Yezpitelok
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:28 am [Reply]

    @Huckleberry Fink (#y300):

    Don’t Judge Me: Blandie and Alan get loaded before they start banging.

    Blandie’s son with Alan will be named “B.C.” — after the comic strip. And the place where he was conceived: the Business Center.

  2. seismic-2
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:28 am [Reply]

    ASM: “I’m not here to hurt anyone!

    Ladies and Gentlemen – meet the leader of the revolution!

  3. Boophilus
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:31 am [Reply]

    9Cl: So Seth’s defense is that it is okay to take from people who  are intimated by you or who are less intelligent than you are.  You know, like running Internet scams on the elderly — ha ha if they don’t know any better they don’t deserve their money — or if some 6’9″ hulk approached you and said “Give me all your money” … Well, if you’re too big of a wimp to ignore them, then I guess it’s just a gift you decided to give them for asking nicely.

    THAT is his defense, instead of mentioning at any time that there was a strong concern for animal abuse (in their opinion).

  4. Hibbleton
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:32 am [Reply]

    MT: Although Mark has finally abandoned wearing baby shoes (and if I weren’t so lazy, I’d link to an old story line), he’s still wearing his baby socks, hence the bare ankles.

  5. Mr. Yezpitelok
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    …but instead of wearing khaki socks like usual today he’s just showing off his sexy bare ankles, the tease.

    That’s easily explained. Mark put his socks on his HANDS to keep them warm.

  6. Anonymous
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    @Boophilus (#3): That’s not Seth, it’s Sven. Seth is the /gay/ hulking blond guy that Edda would totally bang if it wasn’t for that mousy guy to whom she’s engaged.

  7. Chareth Cutestory
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:35 am [Reply]

    Hombre-Araña:Hey, I just wanted to do a quick spot check on “Hombre Araña” as the proper translation. My hope was that it actually turned into something just slightly off, like “Spider-Fellow.” I’m sad to report that they actually got it right. I’m thrilled to say there are a ton of Spanish language Hombre Araña youtube clips. ¡Adiós productividad!

  8. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:35 am [Reply]

    A3G-”The long version would take several weeks and many roundabout ways to tell.”

    JP-Nothing like being drunk to write a movie script.

    JP 2-We know what sort of banging they’re talking about.

    JP 3-After you guys have sex for a few days how long will it take you to actually write the script.

    MW-Does that sound like a cry for help on Mary’s end? Who will help her? Who meddles the meddler?

    Archie-Look we’re mentioning the year 2011 to prove that we aren’t a hopelessly out of date comic still set in the Nineties.

  9. Powers
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:36 am [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#6): Whoops, that was me.

    While I’m here, what’s the significance of the treehouse to a Department of Ethics, anyway?

  10. pugfuggly
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:39 am [Reply]

    A3G “What if I die and leave her all alone? Hmmm…well, I guess I wouldn’t have to tell her then, would I? Nevermind: problem solved.

    MT I guess the hardened criminals of the backwoods aren’t as up-to-date on the oldest tricks in the book.Not bad, but I would have preferred if Mark had used the ol’ “Hey, before you go, can I interest you in a ‘Hurtz Donut’?”

    ASM “…and with all these metal poles around I’d better figure out something fast. It’s only a matter of time before I manage to knock myself out somehow…”

  11. Écureuil Écumant
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:40 am [Reply]

    A3G: The meddlovirus has broken out in New York! Quick, alert the CDC!

  12. gleeb
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:43 am [Reply]

    3G-A brain tumor? Wow, maybe you should calm down and have a drink. No, that’s out, isn’t it?

    ‘shaft-Loveable misanthrope Ed has put terror in his neighbor’s heart. And it’s funny.

    ‘bean-Another band concert? Deaf adder Dinkle is working them like a punch press.

    Judge Privileged-“It doesn’t write the script! I’m not paying good money for this!”
    “It’s free.”
    “That’s not the point! I’m Alan Parker, bestselling author of The Chambers Affair, and I will not be trifled with!”

    Mark-Boot of Justice!

    Zits-Keep pimping that book!

    Dick-Oh yeah. The cheesy medallion, the popped collar, the whole look spells honesty. Not only would I not do business with that man, I wouldn’t eat from the same salad bar as him.

    Luann-He’s just trying to make Gunther jealous.

    Pluggers-…mix pills and alcohol because they want to make it look like an accident.

  13. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:44 am [Reply]

    9CL – We spent the better part of a week swearing in Other Brother Daryl, skipped his actual testimony, then asked Sveth to speculate as to why he didn’t file a complaint earlier. Then we conclude that it is because they are stupid, not that, continuing off of yesterday’s testimony, they were intimidated by this huge man dropping by and walking off with their property. Given his behavior, Sveth is on thin ice calling other people stupid. But, he is probably used to getting away with this, given that he is six foot nine and full of muscles.

    I like it better when the ‘plot’ is just an excuse for Burbers to talk about sex, rather than when the ‘plot’ is just an excuse to point and jeer at the dumb hicks.

    @Boophilus (#3): THAT is his defense, instead of mentioning at any time that there was a strong concern for animal abuse

    The ‘abuse’ hasn’t been mentioned since the very first introduction of this storyline. I assume it will resurface as the Deus Ex Machina that suddenly rescues Fleurry and makes her the hero.

    @Anonymous (#6): “hulking blond guy that Edda would totally bang if it wasn’t for that mousy guy to whom she’s engaged he would let her.”

  14. Shran
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:46 am [Reply]

    A3G: So, are LuAnn’s motion lines supposed to mean that she’s just moving her head back in surprise or that she’s shaking with fear because she thinks brain tumors are contagious? Because, I think the second option is more likely.

  15. Ranger
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:49 am [Reply]

    Luann: Tiffany was so excited about Quill’s speech that she took off her pants.

    SM: From my understanding, all air traffic controllers can speak English.

  16. Dennis Jimenez
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:50 am [Reply]

    MT – Mark could take out Michael Naismith with his hands tied behind his back….

    WoI – So, the King is the one who’s not covered in shit, right? But the whole strip is shit. So…the King is made of wood….and therefore….A WITCH – BURN THE WITCH….

    A3G – Lu Ann knows how to beat that brain tumor rap – don’t get a brain in the first place….

    S-M – I learn something every day – Arana means dip-shit en Espaniol….

    Heath – OK, I’ve been struggling with this one, but I guess I’ve come down to it would be some kind’a ‘tater Heath could slug out of the park batting with a whale….

    Adios Amigos, DJ.

  17. The Ridger
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:53 am [Reply]

    JP: Omigosh. Don’t let Les hear you say you can “bang out” a movie script in a couple of days! Of course, he’s adapting a classic work of heart-felt emotion, not a pot-boiler like The Chambers Affair.

  18. pugfuggly
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:56 am [Reply]

    C’shaft I read as far as ‘[...]Crankshaft take advantage of those women’ and decided I just didn’t want to risk it by continuing.

    JP I guess we’re taking a break from our regularly scheduled story to have an in-depth tutorial on a fictional script-writing program. You guys sure know entertainment…



  19. bats :[
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:00 am [Reply]

    MT: and shoes that are nearly the right size for feet for a man of his height!

    Double your pleasure
    Double your fun
    ‘Cuz it’s my birthday
    And also Peter O’Toole’s an’ he’s 81!

    Let’s have something fizzy, gang!

  20. Amos Snarkadder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:00 am [Reply]

    A3G Brain tumor? At last, the A3G-Funky Winkerbean cross-over!

  21. Amos Snarkadder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:05 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Ah, Mary has finally stopped walking through the desert and chosen to float down Baja!
    // Oh, and Happy Birthday!!!

  22. Dennis Jimenez
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:05 am [Reply]

    @The Ridger (#17): If it’s gonna’ be banged out, perhaps it should be The Marilyn Chambers Affair….

  23. Cayuga
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:07 am [Reply]

    A3G – “The doctors found a brain tumor. It was on the floor in the corner, behind a lamp.”

  24. Bunivasal
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:07 am [Reply]

    Spider man, Spider man, Ugly American Spider-Man. Can he speak / your native tongue? No he can’t, cuz he’s too dumb. Look out! He is the spider man.

  25. Pozzo
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:08 am [Reply]

    Maybe LuAnn can be a donor, since she’s not using her brain, anyway.

  26. Mibbitmaker
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:08 am [Reply]

    Heathcliff, meta: ….or unreal, whatever the case may be.

    MW: Whereas the readers *annoying melodramatic sigh* climb into the abyss and stay there.

    S-M: Then, out of habbit, Russian dictator Putin gives Spidey temporary asylum.

    Crank: “It’s capitalism, honey.”

    MT: Trail trickery: Using his footfist.

    Popeye: Ah, the ol’ Billy Costello/Jack Mercer “Izzat so” (sic). Nice to see it in the comics.

    JP: “And now, the Academy Award for ‘Banging Out a Script in a Couple of Days’, the nominees are…..”

  27. The Ghost of Jarrod
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:08 am [Reply]

    MT – Easily the best part of this is the expression on Mark’s face. He’s not upset, he’s not struggling, he’s not even excited. He’s bored. Sure, he’s kicking the hell out of the two-bit punk who tried to kill him. Just another day that ends in “y.”

    Luann – And now I’m stabby

    WizId – So the joke is that…um…that…huh. On the plus side, they finally got a chance to use that treehouse clipart.

  28. Amos Snarkadder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:11 am [Reply]

    MW As usual, Mary, it’s all about you, isn’t it?

    MT That season in “A Chorus Line” has paid off for Mark again!

    FW That’s funny, because at their age, one of them should be dead by now.

  29. Amos Snarkadder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:12 am [Reply]

    @Pozzo (#25): Bwahaha! COTW nomination!

  30. nescio
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:12 am [Reply]

    Someone should tell Heathcliff that that’s not the proper use for a scratching post.

  31. McManx
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:15 am [Reply]

    Family Circus — Well I could accept this as cute infantile banter, or recognize it for what it is: Jeffy is a symbiot whose various body parts struggle for dominance over each other. Right now, the Mouth wins, but Jeffy’s Pee-Pee is just waiting for bedtime to exact his revenge.

    M Worth — As she hesitatingly returns the upward hand salute, it dawns on Mary that June is apparently a neo-Nazi.

    M Trail — Judging from the perspective here, the bad guy was approaching Mark on his knees. No wonder Mark kicked him in the head.

  32. White Rabbit
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:20 am [Reply]

    I think the Id “joke” is that the new OGE building is as cheap as possible, in order to help balance the budget.

  33. AhClem
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:21 am [Reply]

    A3G – A brain tumor on top of head injuries and PTSD? Cole must have been stationed in Winkerbeanistan.

  34. Voshkod
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    And Heathcliff misses Herman Melville’s birthday by one day. So close, you moronic cat.

  35. Mibbitmaker
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:25 am [Reply]

    MW: This strip is so soapy it makes you feel dirty!

    MT: Hey, big news: This strip finally made it to the late ’80s! Here we see Mr. Trail sporting the Miami Vice look.


    A3G: Here’s the latest from Crackpot Science Magazine:

    Cole’s Theory on brain tumors: “You cannot die on your loved ones if you don’t tell them about your fatal disease. It’s scientific fact!”

    Next issue: The great true science debate on the biologically sound beginning of life:
    When God Says So, or When The Mother Says So.

    True biology facts, only in Crackpot Science Magazine
    (by the publishers of True Law Magazine, edited by Mark Trail, esq.)

  36. Écureuil Écumant
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:26 am [Reply]

    Archie: Arch takes a quick glance over his shoulder. Alarm sluices across his normally-placid features as he realizes the sun’s nuclear furnace has gone out! Oh noes! He’s been reading that book since 2011, and now he’ll never have the chance to fuck Veronica finish it!!

  37. MondayNightSteve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:28 am [Reply]


  38. Naked Bunny with a Whip
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    I’m just glad that Cole isn’t an important enough character that we’ll have to spend a week watching Masky McDeath dance him into the afterlife.

  39. Missal
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    A3G: Brain tumor! Of course! That explains everything: the shifting faces! the changing backgrounds! the barely coherent dialogue! It’s not because of crappy writing or sloppy artwork! It’s what he actually perceives! BECAUSE HE HAS A BRAIN TUMOR! Brilliant!

  40. Lily Sincere
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:37 am [Reply]

    It’s great that Cole realizes that Lu Ann hasn’t got much in the way of an attention span, but I think “the doctors found a brain tumor” is a statement that requires more than “The short version is….” At least give us a size that’s a comparison to sporting equipment (“the size of a golf ball” or “the size of a tennis ball”). Lu Ann’s heard her brain compared to a whiffle ball so often that she’ll be able to understand that kind of analogy.

  41. TheDiva
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    A3G: A brain tumor is the perfect A3G disease. It sounds scary but you don’t have to draw any outward symptoms or refer to anything below the waist.

    MT: Wow, Mark kicked that guy so hard that his right arm rotated 180 degrees in its socket!

    SM: Spider-Man’s been in the country less than an hour and he’s already completely cocked up his rescue attempt. That’s gotta be some kind of record.

  42. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    MT: A commenter over at Comics Kingdom points out that Elrod is reusing panels from Feb 1999. About halfway down this page.

    // Cut and paste! What a time saver!

  43. Esther Blodgett
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    A3G: I’m not following this storyline, so I’m only vaguely aware that Craggy McBrushcut there is named Cole. That may be why, when I glanced at LuAnn’s word balloon, my mind’s eye read it as “Oh, no, asshole!”

    FW: Wally is perverting the Natural Order of Things in Westview. Everyone knows that it’s Education – House – Cancer.

    * Happy Birthday, bats :[ *

  44. seismic-2
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:47 am [Reply]

    A3G: “PTSD, depression, substance abuse, and a brain tumor? Wow, you do have problems. But if you want to see someone who really has a messed-up head, Tommie brought home from the hospital an x-ray of a guy who has a nail in his skull! Boy, what an Einstein!”

  45. Mikey
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:48 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy B-Day Bats :[ !!

  46. billman
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:48 am [Reply]

    @White Rabbit (#32):

    I think you got it but that’s a pretty elaborate tree house and probably cost a fortune. Anything more than a 2×4 wedged between a couple branches starts to run into money.

  47. Droopy Says
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    Happy Birthday, Bats :[ !

    9 Dickweed Lane: This is exactly like the Three Stooges in Disorder in the Court, only without the Stooges, or their humor, or their creativity, or their manic energy, or their charm. I never wondered what that would be like.

  48. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    JP – And we are back to another favorite trope. We must be constantly reminded that 1) They get free money everywhere they go 2) Other, poorer people do all the work for them and 3) It isn’t really that much work.

    And we can never let it just pass unmentioned, we have to be told that this is happening. With all the dim bulbs in this strip, you would think they wouldn’t require this much lampshading.

  49. Casey, Crime Photographer
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy birthday, bats :[

    You also share a birthday with Wes Craven, Myrna Loy, Kevin Smith,
    Mary-Louise Parker, Victoria Jackson and Dingdong Dantes.

  50. revenge4Aldo
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:56 am [Reply]

    Peanuts: Charlie Brown fits the Ewing Theory.
    Pearls: The Comic Strip Censor spends so much time following Jef, he just completely misses 9CL.
    MW: Pool party coming up!

  51. TheDiva
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:56 am [Reply]

    9CL: I think the alleged writer has his alleged head up his alleged ass so far that he needs to pull his pants down to put his glasses on.

    C’shaft: People let Crankshaft get away with reprehensible behavior because it’s only slightly less destructive than some of his other tendencies. This explains a great deal.

    FW: This just in: the people of Westview are still a bunch of failures.

    Luann: “Except you, Tiffany. We only invited you here to remind you that you’re an evil tramp who can’t possibly compare to Luann’s special inner beauty. Go die in a fire, Tiffany.”

    MW: When you stare too long into the meddling, the meddling stares back.

    Pibgorn: I’m not sure what’s going on in the second-to-last panel. Either the background was drawn first and the characters were crudely superimposed on top of it, or the characters were drawn first and the background was squeezed in to fit around them as best it could.

    Pluggers are alcoholic drug addicts.

  52. Mikey
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:01 am [Reply]

    MT- So, in a walk-in cooler, no one can hear you get your teeth kicked out? (I’m assuming the objects below Frankie’s hat are his teeth) No “WHAM!!”?? No “CRUNCH!”?? No “Bllaarrgghh!!” Not even a “Fronnnk!” ?

  53. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:01 am [Reply]

    A&J: heh.

    AD: Poteet and I agree.

    Lio: well, we now know where IT ended up.

    NAoQV: *SNURK*

    PBS: just look at it!!!!

    SBp: Justice League butt monkey, again. (still?)

    Bizarro: cute. (I regret nothing!)

    6Cx: the Bluebird of Happiness is unhappy.

    rMC: *snurk* (yay Lilystrips!)

  54. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    Love Is. . . the ol’ in-out.

  55. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:04 am [Reply]

    JP: Let’s see. She said a movie script is 120 pages. “Banging it out in a couple of days” would be 60 pages a day, or 5 pages an hour, provided they work 12 hour days. That’s some fine typing there.

    // But I suppose a movie script has wide margins, and lots of white space between the dialogue — for the actors and director and everyone to take notes on. Piece of Mary Worth pink cake if you ask me. It’s natural.

  56. The Spectacular Spider-Brick
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:08 am [Reply]

    WoI: I’m pretty sure that the joke is that to balance the budget, the King is cutting the expenses of a department he doesn’t care anything about — ethics — to the point where the only headquarters it can afford is a treehouse.

  57. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19):
    Happy Birthday.

  58. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    Zits-Of course Jeremy would pick a book with pictures since words are too taxing for him.

    A3G-Where is Mary Worth when you need her? She would tell Cole what to do.

  59. Mikey
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    MW- Geez Mary, please climb down from that cross. We need the wood.

  60. Horace Broon
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:32 am [Reply]

    A3G I’m reminded irresistably of the denoument of Clue:
    Wandsworth: And to cut a long story short…
    Everyone: Too late!

    FW: Ha, it’s funny because she took a usage of the phrase “home work” that doesn’t actually exist, and twisted it to the meaning that’s the only thing anyone would think it refers to! The joke is on us, as we spend valuable time and brainpower trying to decipher a pun that would be pretty weak even if it worked!

    JP: She wants to spend the next couple of days helping the judge bang something out. I don’t think I need to add anything more to that.

    MW: If you’re trying to convince me that Mary doesn’t enjoy meddling and that interefering in others’ lives is a tragic burden she must bear, you’re going to have to do better than that.

    RMMD: This is what happens when rich people think medical professionals should be distrusted if they follow their rules, not ours!

    Phantom: Wait. isn’t your entire schtick based on claiming that you’re…? So how would you…? Oh, forget it.

    Pluggers: Sure, like Pluggers recycle.

  61. deelightful
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:32 am [Reply]

    A3G: And the long version is…we seem to be recovering from a few rounds of botched botox, because both of our faces are incapable of doing anything normal.

  62. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:43 am [Reply]

    A3G-Leave your daughter alone? Doesn’t she have an aunt that she could live with.

    MW-Of course Mark’s still with you. He’s not a Jedi whose body disappears when they die.

  63. bbofun
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:45 am [Reply]

    RMMD_ Although it’s taken a long time to get there, this strip is, at least, actually going to impart some good information. Too many people seem to think herbal remedies AREN’T medicine. St. john’s Wort, in particular, can be a nasty customer if you take too much. So, bravo to Woody Wilson. Now, just let Sarah be a kid, please? Or kill her off- either’s fine with me.

    PHANTOM- But- isn’t your whole schtick that you’re a “ghost?”

    JP- Adapting a work of fiction into another form ain’t that easy, folks. You have to decide which scenes are not only necessary, but how to make them interesting cinematically. You have to figure out how to communicate ideas entirely in dialogue and images, rather than description. In short (too late!), you have to rethink the entire way of storytelling for the new medium. I’m taking back my bravo, Mr. Wilson. Sorry.

    MW- This encounter has drained Mary’s essence. She must recharge by being praised incessantly-get Toby on the phone!

    LUANN- If you have to be reminded that your girlfriend is “more special” than the rest of your friends, there’s something wrong.

    9CL- So- this is Fleurrie’s lawyer doing the questioning, yes? So, I assume this is cross-examination? How exactly is this helping his client?

  64. Casey, Crime Photographer
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    Bizarro: He’s wearing his “No Guess” jeans with his “No Regrets” tattoo.

  65. Dartpaw86
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    Wizard of ID: Pleasepleaseplease let that be a time travelling treehouse belonging to Calvin and Hobbes!

  66. Écureuil Écumant
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:52 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#42): Interesting. It looks like today’s floor-kick has a slight addition. I can’t tell if it’s a “HOOH”, a “HOON” or a “MOON”. Or maybe it’s just his airborne choppers.

  67. Shrug and the Great Chain of Cuteness-Being
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:53 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#y288):

    “Yeah, Hawaiian Shirt Guy apparently has mixed up babies with dogs. If your golden retriever licks a lady’s face, sniffs her butt, and whizzes on a tree she’ll laugh and say it’s cute. If your baby does the same thing it’s probably going to get a different reaction.”

    And if Hawaiian Shirt Guy himself does the same thing, still more different.

  68. Brad
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    In what might be a first (at least in the history of this blog), Mark Trail forgoes a blatant frontal assault in favor of a genuine surprise attack! Naturally, it’s also the first time ever that he doesn’t yell “SURPRISE!” right in the middle of attacking.

    Also, considering the decent adventures with ham helmets and elephant cavalry, “Heathcliff keeps it real” might be one of the most ironic statements ever written.

  69. Ratiocinator
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:57 am [Reply]

    I don’t seem to be able to snark well today, so here are my snarkless comments on a couple of strips:

    Luann: Is Tiffany just at this party so Luann can engage in a PDA with Quill right in front of her?

    RMMD: But how did this result in a diagnosis of heart problems? Still waiting to find that out.

  70. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:57 am [Reply]


    Enjoy your BATSDAY CAKE!

  71. Yon Shrug Hath an Alien and Hungry Look
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:59 am [Reply]

    @Walker of Dog (#y158):

    There’s an sf story by William Tenn, “Party of the Two Parts,” which actually does involve an alien sleazebag pushing alien amoeba pornography (depicting one in the process of splitting).

    /// Meh, I can take it or leave it alone. But one of my amoeba friends admit that it makes him — er, sorry, that should now be “them” — hot.

  72. jim, some guy in iowa
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:03 am [Reply]

    @bbofun (#63): re: 9CL – as usual Mc E is just making things up as he goes along, so when Sveth reaches over and tears the Smuckling brothers limb from limb for being questioning his version of ‘events’ Judge Thorax will smile indulgently and award their farm to Fluerrie because of the reasons. Then it’s time for more t-n-a and hand jive

  73. jim, some guy in iowa
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:05 am [Reply]

    bats:[ birthday? well, I hope it’s a good one :-)

  74. Packy
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:08 am [Reply]

    …but instead of wearing khaki socks like usual today he’s just showing off his sexy bare ankles, the tease.

    Of course Mark Trail isn’t wearing socks. He’s UNDERCOVER, duh!

  75. Esther Blodgett
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:10 am [Reply]

    Pluggers have discovered the precise ratio of painkillers to alcohol to keep them in a perpetual state of blissed-out apathy without the risk of passing out in the middle of Walmart.

  76. seismic-2
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    Pibgorn: This is the worst adaptation of a story since Alan Parker’s screenplay for The Chambers Affair.

  77. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#60): Sure, like Pluggers recycle.

    Sure they do. Perhaps not gladly, but there are places where recycling is pretty much required.

    My sister-in-law lives in a town in W. Penn.. There, ordinary garbage has to be in bags with a special tax stamp on it, which you buy from the city. Stuff in recycling bins is picked up for free. You don’t want to recycle, fine, but garbage pick up is going to cost you a lot more. It is a very effective program.

  78. notmydesk
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    Seeing as Ahab was on a ship, in the water, and pursuing living creatures, Heathcliff and his half-assed visiting the fish monger has, like, almost zero in common with him. I mean, I guess I appreciate the effort, but It seems like Heathcliff could’ve just saved some money and went dressed as, well, a guy visiting the fish monger. Whatever. Any excuse for a costume, I guess.

  79. Dan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    “Hey, I understood that! Okay then, I’m gonna go ahead and call this one a victory while I’m ahead. Go Spidey!”

  80. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:25 am [Reply]

  81. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    @Écureuil Écumant (#66): Don’t forget the sideburns! This is not just recycling. It is original art. Someone had to DRAW those sideburns in!

  82. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy B-Day!

  83. Mikey
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    @Packy (#74): I actually think he’s using his socks to keep his unit from freezing off i.e. “I don’t care if my feet freeze off but Boy Howdy, we need to take care of Little Mark at all costs!”

  84. Simple Country Doctor Shrug
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:29 am [Reply]

    @Shran (#14):

    “So, are LuAnn’s motion lines supposed to mean that she’s just moving her head back in surprise or that she’s shaking with fear because she thinks brain tumors are contagious?”

    It’s a comic strip, so who knows — maybe in A3G world brain tumors ARE contagious — but even so LuAnn should not worry. She’s immune to catching brain tumors, the same way she’s immune to catching testicular cancer.

  85. Ratiocinator
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:37 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy birthday bats :[ ! That JP mashup was hilarious!!! XD

    @Horace Broon (#60):

    This is what happens when rich people think medical professionals should be distrusted if they follow their rules, not ours!

    Ah yes, I remember that.

  86. Rusty
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:44 am [Reply]

    A3G: Someone should tell the artist that brain tumors are not visible to the naked eye, nor located just under the facial skin.

  87. Shrug, Putting Plugger Hat Back On
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:44 am [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#60):

    “Sure, like Pluggers recycle.”

    Sure we do. (If you really want to, I suppose you can just assume it’s a relatively easy way for us to feel virtuous and public-spirited, thus giving us a free pass on not doing some of harder things to achieve that feeling.)

    A few months ago, Minneapolis changed its recycling rules to make recycling even easier — we used to have to have separate bags for metal, glass, plastic, and paper, but now can dump everything into one (and the standards for what plastics and papers were loosened so we longer have to separate out certain varieties as undesirable). A few days after this started, the local paper published an Op-Ed piece by a woman complaining (humorously but with the air of reality) that this depressed her Norwegian-American husband, who used to take great pride in carefully inspecting and sorting his recyclables; now all of the challenge and fun for him had been removed. I had to double-check the byline to be sure the Op-Ed had not been submitted by Mrs. Shrug.

  88. odinthor
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    JP. — Is this going to turn into the Judge Parker version of Paris When It Sizzles?

  89. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:50 am [Reply]

    Alley Oop: Not to be too logical or anything, but what need to hurry does a man with a time machine have? He’s got all the time in the world, literally.

    Apt. 3-G: “Yessir, a brain tumor,” he said as he pulled the butcher’s knife from within his aquamarine shirt. “Can’t do anything about a brain tumor.”[*]

    Archie: 1993 1997 2003 2011.

    Dick Tracy: I cannot tell you how disappointed I am that Hy Pressure is not short, squat, and wearing red. Of course, if that were the case, he would be easily defeated by Dick Tracy’s dog. Does Dick Tracy have a dog? Don’t tell me if he has a dog.

    Heathcliff: That fishmonger’s going to be a whole lot more impressed when he has a gold coin nailed to his shin.

    Judge Parker: “Bang this out.” Heh. It would be a double-entendre (and the end of Alan’s marriage) were it not for his workaholism.

    Luann: A kiss??!! Does this mean Luann gets puffy lips now? Maybe one puffy lip? One-and-a-half?

    Mark Trail: The physics are all wrong here. The gun’s spinning around one way, the patsy is going another, and Mark’s doing it all from a seated slump. No sir, this doesn’t make sense a-tall. Not unless there’s an otter involved.

    Mary Worth: You climb into the abyss, and then have to climb out again. And then an anvil falls on you. Please God? 80 years of climbing in and out of abysses is a long time…

    Rex Morgan, M.D.: I smell some sort of bats :[ mashup coming here. Don’t know what, but it’s coming…

  90. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:51 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy birthday! Hope you haven’t had as much to drink as Peter O’Toole!

  91. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 10:52 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Oh, and Mary Worth cast adrift on a yoga mat is pretty much what I’d define as a “best case scenario.”

  92. walt d.
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:07 am [Reply]

    9CL: Not that Sven himself is the sharpest knife in the drawer.

  93. Little Debbie
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:08 am [Reply]

    Pibgorn: The only way I can make it through this pathetic attempt at Shakespeare-speak is to turn it into a drinking game. I’ll pick five words, like “alas”, “forsooth” and “vexed”. Every time one of those shows up, I’ll drink a Vodka Fire. It will probably be the first time ever I look forward to reading anything by McEldowney.

  94. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:11 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#47): This is exactly like the Three Stooges in Disorder in the Court, only without the Stooges, or their humor, or their creativity, or their manic energy, or their charm.

    I always thought that Shelly, the dancer with the big, lovely legs, was very charming!

  95. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:14 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth Comments

    Somehow Mary Worth and June have broken the laws of thermodynamics and survived the parched blazing midday Arizona desert heat unharmed, damnit.

    Apparently what I thought was a dowager’s hump on Mrs. Worth’s back is really a camel’s hump. I have no other explanation for her desert survival skills.


  96. Lumaca Morente
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:19 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy natal day, bats[: – I wish I could think of something clever to say, but I can’t, so *that’s* my gift to you.

  97. A-wel Cruiz
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:20 am [Reply]

    Better Half: Death Valley, California.

    Drabble: Silly Ralph. Your balls have belonged to your wife for years. Oh, and GOLF!

    Herb and Jamaal: “ANUS!”, thought Herb.

    Jumble: Up your nose with a rubber hose. Or something.

    Slylock Fox: But how do you draw the crippling head injury when he falls because he wasn’t wearing a helmet?

  98. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#94): Oops. IMDB informs me that her character’s name was not Shelly, but “Gail Tempest”, and that the actresses name was Suzanne Kaaren. Best know for her role in Bela Lugosi’s “Devil Bat” (1940). Quote: [on working with The Three Stooges in Disorder in the Court (1936)] What fun! “Disorder in the Court” is the biggest moneymaker of all the Stooge comedies. I only did it as a lark–I had a little time when Jules White saw me dancing and said, “With those legs, you’ve gotta do it”.

    // Jules White knew a good thing when he saw it.

  99. Lumaca Morente
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:27 am [Reply]

    @Écureuil Écumant (#66): I think the flying object in Mark Trail is Mark’s slave anklet, which flew loose with the force of his kick.

  100. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    Phantom: And so, the Phantom is off and will ride his horse from Africa to New York City.

  101. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:34 am [Reply]

    OMG! Cole served in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Westview (“Cancerville”), Ohio.

  102. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    Are they friends or enemies?” asks Killer. “Fuck buddies.”

  103. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    RwO: Lazy Artist Department

    I would guess most cartoonists would take the little extra time to show the cat doing all four things. This cartoonist, not so much.

  104. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:42 am [Reply]

    Missing fourth panel in Henry: “A cowpie. A big stinky cowpie.”

  105. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:44 am [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#89): No sir, this doesn’t make sense a-tall.

    Dang it, Right Ven.! If it made sense in 1999, twice in three days, it has to make sense now. Don’t you see that? And now it makes sense in color!

  106. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:44 am [Reply]

    A3G-”Talk to your daughter, Cole, because I sure as hell won’t.”

    MW-’After Charlie’s gone’? For the past week or two we’ve believed this Charlie person is already gone. Are you telling us that you are planning on killing him?

  107. aprilglaspie
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    Judge Parker is headed for Nelson Rockefeller’s untimely end.

  108. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    ArcaMax got a little bizarre with today’s Bizarro.

  109. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:52 am [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#102): And just where this “Bar” Sarge and Beetle are drinking? They appear to still be at Camp Swampy, and they are both still in uniform. Junior and senior enlisted usually have separate clubs. Unless one of them signed the other one in as a guest, and in practice, that is usually discouraged. Oh, nevermind.

  110. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#108): I liked that one. At least Tattoo Guy will always be able to admire it by looking in a mirror.

  111. tegrat
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    Of course the first thing that happens when you kick the gun of someone holding a gun is that the gun flies out of their hands, amirite?

  112. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 11:56 am [Reply]

  113. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:23 pm [Reply]

    Archie: That boy needs to be cloistered for a while. At least until he finishes that book.

  114. Illustrator Steve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:33 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy Birthday, Bats! and best wishes from all of the fellows down at big MIke’s illegal hunting lodge!

    /// and don’t forget… as always all illegal hunting guests receive a 10% discount and a free pancake breakfast on their birthday!

  115. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:40 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#114):

    And at the T. Rading Post they have a special on costumes for bats :[ birthday.

  116. Ukulele Ike
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:42 pm [Reply]

    Josh — As best I remember, there are no chick roles in Moby-Dick. Is the Missus performing in drag?

  117. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy Birthday! I’m sending you an internet magic flying wee-wee pad. Keep it in case you see an elderly helmet-haired hag wandering Oracle around looking for her next “victim.” When you instinctively wet yourself, the magic flying wee-wee pad’ll get you out of her range, post haste.

  118. TheDiva
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    @bbofun (#63): re: Luann: It’s not Quill’s fault; it’s required that someone point out how special Luann is every few strips. Lord knows her personality and actions will never get the point across on their own.

    @Little Debbie (#93): Pathetic it may be, but an attempt at Shakespeare-speak it’s not–the dialogue (so far as I can tell) is 100% pure Bard. (Which may be unoriginal, but hey, anything that prevents Brooke McEldowney from writing his own dialogue is okay by me.)

    I fully support doing a drinking game, though. It can only be an improvement.

  119. Illustrator Steve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#77): Sort of the saem where I live in Maine. The city issued each household two large garbage containers on wheels. One is brown for recycleables and the other is green for household trash so I always make sure I put the food waste in the green one and all of my propane tanks and old leaky cans of lead paint in the brown one.

    // the ultimate plugger response to required recycling would be to ask the city officials how much the fine is for not recycling and WHO the check should be made out to.

  120. captainswift
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:45 pm [Reply]

    Ah, today’s Beetle Bailey. Continuing the tradition of 60s comic books, 80s sitcoms, and mediocre local comedians of using current slang, correctly and completely in context, and calling it a joke.

  121. Droopy Says
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:46 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#98): Gail Tempest. That’s another reason the 9CL courtroom mess is no Disorder in the Court. You just know how McEch will reinterpret her dance, and it will end with fangs. (She worked with Lugosi? Damn. It’s been too long since I watched that one.)

  122. Ukulele Ike
    August 2nd, 2013 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    Drat….I forgot the mistress of the Try-Pots Inn in Nantucket. Mrs. Corpse, or something. I refuse to google it, and the novel’s on the far side of the room.

  123. Ukulele Ike
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:00 pm [Reply]

    Oh, yeah….Mrs. Hussey. The famous “chowder” chapter.

    I was mixing up the Try-Pots with the Spouter Inn in New Bedford, run by Mr. Coffin.

  124. Sequitur
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:00 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#122):

    Nantucket? Does this involve a limerick?

  125. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:01 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#105): Mark Trail is green. He believes in recycling.

  126. Droopy Says
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:02 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#55): Judge Pissyface has to take The Chambers Affair and boil it down into a two hour script? The usual formula is one page of text converts to one minute of screen time. These days a typical short novel starts at three hundred pages. That’s five hours of screen time. Now is JP going to have a tantrum because the Hollywood moguls expect him to cut His Precious Words by at least 60% (and edit the speeches into human-sounding, screen-friendly dialog)? Or will the studio send a well-built, raven-haired troubleshooter to let him know that audiences and theater owners are eager to sit through his five hour epic?

  127. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:05 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#124):

    “There once was a man from Nantucket
    Who kept all his cash in a bucket.

    But his daughter, named Nan,
    Ran away with a man

    And as for the bucket, Nantucket.”

  128. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:05 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#116):

    there are no chick roles in Moby-Dick

    I beg to differ! Don’t you remember the scene where Queeg-Queeg gets married? It’s so tender he takes little…in his arms…

    Oh. Uh. Nevermind.

  129. Joe Blevins
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:08 pm [Reply]

    A3G: This guy is a natural-born storyteller. What if he’d directed Lincoln instead of Steven Spielberg?

    Fade up on a blank white expanse of infinite nothingness. A man with a gym-teacher’s haircut and a blue polo shirt enters, faces the camera, and speaks.

    MAN: The short version is Lincoln frees then slaves, then gets shot and dies.

    He exits. Fade out.

    THE END.

  130. Little A.
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:10 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#103): PBH: You want to know about lazy artists? Just compare how sloppy and careless the art in One Big Happy has become in the last few years — every day I look at the daily strip and “One Big Happy Classics” and notice this. As I have mentioned so many times already here. It’s a shame, really.

  131. Little A.
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:10 pm [Reply]

    Talk about lazy and careless, that should have been OBH of course.

  132. Joe Blevins
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    The short version is Rosebud was a sled.

  133. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    Luann-Isn’t that sweet. Quill has Luann’s virginity.

    Ziggy-Never fly an airline that has to sacrifice your luggage to it’s dark god in order to get the plane up in the air.

  134. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#119): Oh God. You’re bringing back memories of curbside recycling in England. It was something Rube Goldberg would shake his head in confusion at. The council issued a tabloid-sized quarterly calendar, color coded with what got picked up in which container on what day. It was less fuss to just eat out every meal, hire a gardener, and not buy anything with any kind of packaging whatsoever.

    @Little A. (#131): Heh heh, irony.

  135. Call Me Ishmael
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    … just don’t call me late for dinner. Heh heh sorry.

  136. Uncle Lumpy
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:20 pm [Reply]

    The short version is his crazy wife is in the attic.

  137. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:20 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#121): No, no. This Romeo & Juliet. You’re thinking about the one with a sorcerer who used to be a Duke somewhere, and he lives on a desert island with his daughter, Miranda Rights, a movie star, the professor too, a millionaire (and his wife)… it was crowded. Anyway, they all hang out and abuse spirits — but there was a Gail Tempest in that, I’m pretty sure. Anyway, Albert Camus wrote it.

  138. Downpuppy, finder of burrows
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:24 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#8): Given that Henry Scarpelli died in 2010, does anybody know the real story on why they keep rerunning his Archies? Is it the same reason a dog licks his balls?

  139. Little Debbie
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:24 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#118): So THAT’S why I had to do drinking games to get through Shakespeare in college!

  140. "Call me Shrug."
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    @Ukulele Ike (#116):

    I seem to recall an early 1950s downmarket pb of MOBY DICK whose cover depicted a scene in a whaling tavern, with gobs of gobs leering over a serving wench in a lowcut blouse. I remembered it as a Royal Giant pb, but that’s probably a false memory — though judging by the covers that company came up with for other books, including some reprinted classics, it would not have been beyond them:

  141. Illustrator Steve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#109): I can relate to that. While in the NAVY my 21st birthday party was held at the NAS Oceana CPO club on base. I was only an E-3 at the time and was part of the training staff at the FATULANT Nuclear Weapons Training Command center at NAS Oceana in Virginia Beach, VA. The training staff was made up mostly of senior enlisted Aviation Ordnancemen. My Senior Chief set ny birthday party up as a surprise. He and his wife along with two E-6′s and three E-7′s were there. He also invited my parents who flew up from Ft. Lauderdale for it. Those guys treated me like family the two years I was on staff there. Hell, I even baby sat their kids for them. I worked on that training staff from 8am to 4pm monday thru friday with no extra duty sections or any other work details for those two years and surfed at Virginia Beach regularly. When I made E-4 and was being transfered to an aircraft carrier the Chiefs really seemed to enjoy reminding me I was about to find out what the REAL NAVY was like…and they were right!

    /// We were so close as a family on that staff that two years after I got out of the Navy my old Senior Chief actually called me up in Fort Lauderdale to let me know my friend who I had worked with on staff (an E-6 who became warrant officer) had been killed in an auto accident. Quite a difference from my miserable division chief on the carrier who only seemed to be able to converse by shouting at people.

  142. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:25 pm [Reply]

    A3G-”The version is…” Too late.

  143. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:26 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#142):

    That is supposed to be read “The short version is…”

  144. seismic-2
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:29 pm [Reply]

    Anna Karenina: The short version is, “Splat!”

  145. bats :[
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:29 pm [Reply]

    @revenge4Aldo (#50): actually, I think it’d be keen to see a health resort (or as we say out here, “dude ranch”) pool party. Old miners’ lamps glowing, coyotes howling in the foothills, palo verde beetles dive-bombing guests, bats drinking from the pool and the bird feeders (some do, and it is really keen), and Mary skulking her way into the cantina to whip up some chile rescampos and pink guacamole (the secret is that she’s replaced the avacado with salmon)…

  146. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:30 pm [Reply]

    The short version is the whale symbolizes a penis.

  147. Baka Gaijin
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:42 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#145): Perfectly pleasant pool party until the pink guac. Bleah.

  148. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:46 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#126): …to let him know that audiences and theater owners are eager to sit through his five hour epic…

    They’ll get Peter Jackson to do it. He’ll film it all at once, but then break it into three parts, to be shown on consecutive Xmas’s. It will be an event, and everyone will be wealthier than the dreams of avarice.

  149. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:46 pm [Reply]

    The short version is the woman’s really a man.

  150. seismic-2
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:47 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#98): Ah, Gail Tempest. Used to be in a Vaudeville act with Gail Storm and Tempest Storm. The audience went wild, when they made their entrance in a giant teapot.

  151. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:50 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#141): …division chief on the carrier who only seemed to be able to converse by shouting at people

    Comes from spending too much time working on a flight deck. Switch to frigates and destroyers, I tell folks. Now there’s a life of elegance and ease!

  152. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:53 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#150): According too her Wikipedia article, Suzanne Kaaren was one of the founding members of the Rockettes. She got by those gams honestly.

  153. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:54 pm [Reply]

    MT-Jason Smith has to be excited now. He gets to join Mark in kicking these guys in the head.

  154. A Little Humor
    August 2nd, 2013 at 1:58 pm [Reply]

    The short version was filmed as TERROR OF TINY TOWN.

  155. Liam
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:04 pm [Reply]

    Wizard of Id-I like how the king calls Sir Rodney, Rod.

  156. Écureuil Écumant
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:05 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#144): Maybe so, but Tolstoy stole that plot from Aldo Kareener.

  157. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:07 pm [Reply]

    @Downpuppy, finder of burrows (#138): Given that Henry Scarpelli died in 2010, does anybody know the real story on why they keep rerunning his Archies?

    Would you believe, a touching tribute to a friend, a great artist, and a fine American? No? I didn’t think so.

    // People are so cynical these days.

  158. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:16 pm [Reply]

    @”Call me Shrug.” (#140): Do you remember Tom Ewell’s role in The Seven Year Itch? He’s a marketing executive at a publishing house specializing in reprinting classics. In the only scenes we see of him at work, right at the beginning of the movie, assistants bring him posters with proposed covers for the books. His sole contribution is to, invariably, take a marker and draw a lower neckline on the dresses of the cuties shown on the covers.

    // I always wanted that job.

  159. tallyHO
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:18 pm [Reply]

    For those of you who think today’s Heathcliff is some variation of a Fish Out of Water gag, I remind you of how Heathcliff doesn’t need to be at sea in order to get a big catch.

    Hint: not only is Heathcliff weird, the town where he lives is weirder.

  160. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:26 pm [Reply]

    @Downpuppy, finder of burrows (#138): Given that Henry Scarpelli died in 2010, does anybody know the real story on why they keep rerunning his Archies? Is it the same reason a dog licks his balls? Ewww. Even though he has been dead for three years? I guess dogs really will eat anything.

  161. Calico
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:27 pm [Reply]

    RM – I was thinking it would be St John’s.
    This should never be consumed with other meds, and even if you take it alone, a medical consultation is recommended.

    Also, grapefruit juice has some serious contraindications with some meds.

  162. Calico
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:30 pm [Reply]

    “I ate them like mints, and now my right hand is bigger than my head!”

  163. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:32 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#155): Very democratic, eh? I always thought it odd, though, in the British system of honors (sorry, honours), an ordinary guy is normally addressed by his last name, except by his closest friends and family. It will be good morning, Mr. Smith, or maybe, Mr. John Smith, when necessary to distinguish him from another Mr. Smith. But once he receives the accolade (to be technical), everybody, from dustmen to dukes, is on a first name basis with him. It’s all of a sudden, good morning, Sir John! And if he is promoted again, into the nobility, he loses his name altogether, and it’s good morning, Lord Bilgewater!

  164. Borborygmy
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:39 pm [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#141): I’m glad they finally got rid of those flatulent nuclear weapons! Talk about a dirty bomb!

  165. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:43 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (Y#314): I think the problem here is that we assumed that McE was going to depict the story told in Romeo and Juliet. Instead, he’s choosing to treat his comic as a stage set and is only showing us the play itself… which means actors walking around talking about things too complicated to show on stage.

    I don’t really get the point, but, eh.

  166. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 2:47 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#161): I don’t care if he was a saint or not. Anybody who eats somebody else’s warts is disgusting.

  167. Erich Clapton
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:01 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#109): Man, you have been away for a long time. The military has become very egalitarian in that there are NO individual clubs. They’re all “All Hands” clubs, and are all failing. Seems that try as they might, “they” just can’t get the ranks together. Besides, the “Drys” have taken over. Where it used to be “If you can’t drive drunk, you can’t drive.”, it’s now “You can’t drink.” As an old cold-war warrior, I’m so glad I’m retired. The one place in the world where you can’t be PC is the place who’s mission statement is to “. . . make some other son of a bitch die for his country.”

  168. Droopy Says
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:15 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#137): I thought I was talking about 9CL, not Bigporn, so I’m confused here. Which I guess is natural when an artiste like King Leer draws so many near-identical female characters. Don’t worry, it will all blow over.

  169. Darryl Heine
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:15 pm [Reply]


    Peanuts 1964 – Charlie Brown’s team won a baseball game without Charlie Brown on the field??!!

    Archie 1997 or 1998 – Even though it’s a late 1990′s Archie rerun, the year has changed to make Archie catch up on reading since 2011!

  170. Darryl Heine
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:15 pm [Reply]

    @Darryl Heine (#169):
    OOPS! I meant PEANUTS 1966, not 1964!

  171. I speak Jive
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:17 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#19): Happy birthday!

  172. walt d.
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:17 pm [Reply]

    Baby Blues: I don’t go to movies so I don’t know what the codes mean now, or even if they still exist. But I would have guessed that monkeys fucking would be more R than PG-13. I also would have guessed that Hammie wouldn’t understand what they were doing. Time to check the filters on his electronic gadgets.

  173. Walker of Dog
    August 2nd, 2013 at 3:18 pm [Reply]

    A3G: Brain tumor?! Bet that alcoholism doesn’t seem so bad now.

    Heath: As a retailer, the fishmonger will feel grudging respect when Heathcliff runs him through with the harpoon, thereby cutting out the middleman.

    MT: Mark lashed out after Frankie pointed his gun where Mark’s balls should be. Not cool, Frankie.

    FC: Sulphuric acid, coming up!

    Plug: Over at the jsonline comics site, someone has righteously condemned Pluggers as “pathetic sheeple”. ” So close!

    Phan: “Say a ghost sent you! And buy me something pretty!”

  174. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 4:30 pm [Reply]

    @Darryl Heine (#169): It might have been funnier if they kept the original date in the line. “How long have you been working on that book?”
    “Since 1995″.

  175. bats :[
    August 2nd, 2013 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    thank you all for your kind wishes! They are muchmuchmuch appreciated!

  176. Nehemiah Scudder
    August 2nd, 2013 at 4:48 pm [Reply]

    Happy Birthday, Bats Colon Left-Bracket! May he watch over you with his comital benevolence.

  177. Mary
    August 2nd, 2013 at 5:23 pm [Reply]

    I don’t know about Latin America, but when I was in Spain Spiderman was just called spiderman. But it was pronounced espeedermon.

  178. The Ridger
    August 2nd, 2013 at 5:40 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#55): But I suppose a movie script has wide margins, and lots of white space between the dialogue — for the actors and director and everyone to take notes on. Which is what the software is for – so Judge Pissyface doesn’t have to edit down from his novel-margined pages. She’s so good to him. Is Katherine doomed?

  179. tallyHO
    August 2nd, 2013 at 5:53 pm [Reply]

    they always come way too late in the day.

    The guy who runs the fish market better not be named Bob because all signs point to Heathcliff wanting to make Fishkabob!

  180. Hyhybt
    August 2nd, 2013 at 7:08 pm [Reply]

    Accounting and ethics are indeed different things, but cutting the budget of a department you don’t use anyway by relocating it to a tree house serves the needs of the one and shows the low priority of the other at the same time.

  181. Illustrator Steve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:18 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#115): HUBBA-HUBBA!

  182. Illustrator Steve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 8:47 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#151): Never saw a frigate anywhere around the naval air station, but I did tell them to FRIGIT! when I was asked to re-up…choose to get out and do the college thing instead and loved it…ended up getting my degree in architecture.

    // heck, my early architectural courses actually included a course in techincal writing, (can’t you tell by my writing and spelling ability?…he asks sarcastically).

    /// Come to think of it, THAT’S the college english instrcutor that told me I spelled my words phonetically…I told her I disagreed and said I was always careful to spell words just the way they sounded!

  183. Artist formerly known as Ben
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:01 pm [Reply]

    H-Cliff: Tomorrow Heathcliff will be asking himself if punking the fishmonger was worth cutting off a leg.
    (Sweet poster, BTW)

    A3G: “No , no, it’s all good. If I die I’ve arranged for one of my army buddies to impersonate me until Marty is old enough to handle it.”

    MT: Mark is much more badass than we give him credit for. He’s kicking-ready after a few hours in deep freeze, and he’s not even wearing socks.

  184. Artist formerly known as Ben
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:02 pm [Reply]

    MW: And as my friend Friedrich once said, when you gaze into the abyss, Mary Worth gazes back.

    FW: August must be the month for lazy wordplay.

    C-Shaft: Is this some kind of political allegory? Snooty yuppie guy has learned to live with tyranny, so long as it means he survives another day?

    9CL: The DA is right, of course, but he should have objected to the question before it was answered with a gratuitous insult. Also, Sven is supposed to be a sexy hunk, right? His well-sculpted body looks like the sculptor never finished.

    JP: I can just see Alan explaining to Katherine that he got loaded with the concierge and banged it out with her. Of course she’ll still be riding high from her slots victory and won’t care.

    RMMD: Side effects of gingko bilboa may include a giant independent hand growing out of your shoulder.

    BB: If you’re trying to defuse long-standing rumors that your main characters are gay for each other, using terms introduced on “Sex and the City” is an odd way to go about it.

    DT: That’s not a standard mug shot. Hy Pressure must be persuasive if he got to keep the toothpick and the half-mast granny glasses.

    DtM: Please tell me that Margaret dosed the apples with LSD and the boys are about to take the trip of their lives.

    Momma: Got to say, Francis is showing an admirable amount of resistance compared with the guy in that “Young Man’s Fancy” Twilight Zone.

  185. Illustrator Steve
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:05 pm [Reply]

    @Borborygmy (#164): Haha, good one! I spelled the name wrong (it was over forty years ago). The correct spelling is FAETULANT which stands for Fleet Airborn Electronics Training Unit Atlantic Fleet. I could never figure out the abbreviated lettering, from the words it seemed it should have been called FAETUAF, but I guess they thought that would’ve just sounded stupid. Too bad I never thought of the flatulant thing back then, it would have made a good gag around the place.

    // But you’re comment is actually correct. Apparently the Navy eventually did do away with nuclear weapons training….at least that’s what they told me.

  186. Peanut Gallery
    August 2nd, 2013 at 9:26 pm [Reply]

    WoI – We’re supposed to believe that the despotic king has an Office of Government Ethics? What the hell, Hagar the Horrible probably has a Twitter account by now…

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#176): That’s a great use of Weirdly!

  187. cvk
    August 4th, 2013 at 8:42 pm [Reply]

    I just pasted “Por favor, señor hombre araña” into Google Translate, and in English it became “Please, Lord Spiderman!” Now I’m not sure who gave him the promotion, the comic authors or Google.

  188. kiem tien online
    August 4th, 2013 at 9:33 pm [Reply]

    Integraphics about Heathcliff is beautiful and easy to attract readers

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