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MILFERNO 2013!

Mark Trail, 9/12/13

I am completely in love with conversation between Mark and Senator Mason because it’s like a conversation between an environmental activist and a pro-oil senator two or three parallel universes over, where the issues are pretty much the same but the ossified political vocabulary consists of an entirely different set of signifiers. “Beautiful areas!” “Outdoor people!” I sincerely hope that every senator from now on starts referring to those supporting environmental protection as an “outdoor people” and those supporting increased exploitation of fossil fuels as “indoor people,” kind of like the difference between indoor and outdoor cats. Of course, this whole surveying business may just be part of the senator’s plan to enclose most of America’s population under vast domes; the few remaining “outdoor people” will be left to fend for themselves, presumably eventually accepting the absolute rule of Mark as their Outdoorsman-in-Chief.

Gil Thorp, 9/12/13

So this year’s Gil Thorp football plots appear set: the A plot involves a hulking behemoth who refuses to speak to anyone and therefore can’t shore up Milford’s sorry offensive line, and the B plot involves Tip the gymnast, who is deigning to grace the cheerleading squad with his nimble presence. Tip’s first order of business: hurling a cheerleader into the flaming maw of the fall Milford bonfire, a sacrifice to the Gods of Football. The Mudlarks have a bonfire every single year, not that it helps much. Have they considered that maybe they’re worshipping a false pantheon, and that Gil is a fraudulent messiah?

Family Circus, 9/12/13

Oh dear, it looks like Mommy’s mind has been annihilated! Hopefully we’ll find out if this was caused by powerful prescription tranquilizers, a nefarious CIA hypnosis scheme, or just her daughter’s irritating and relentless voice.

Momma, 9/12/13

Let’s ignore the joke in today’s Momma (not hard!) and contemplate Thomas’s pants for a minute. Is he supposed to be wearing camo pants? Camo pants and a polo shirt and, like, a kepi? This is a guy who shows up for dinner at his mother’s in a suit and straw boater, but now he appears to be going horribly, horribly casual without any guidance or sense of decency.

Apartment 3-G, 9/12/13

I try to avoid contact with teens as much as I can, but I think I know a little bit about how they think, and I’m pretty sure a bad girl with asymmetrical hair would ever describe a melty-faced middle-aged man with a flattop as “super-hot.” Also, Marty, Lu Ann may be super dumb but she still has sex thoughts! You’ve got a lot to learn about how horny stupid people can get!

278 responses to “MILFERNO 2013!”

  1. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:28 am [Reply]

    MT: Oh, Senator, those empty rationalizations about “not living in the past” and “progress” are so 20th century. Here, try one that’s a little more current: “Mark, this project will create jobs!”

    A3G: In the land of the hideous, the merely weird-looking man is king.

  2. Mr. Yezpitelok
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:29 am [Reply]

    Gil: I knew an 18-year-old who thought comedian Harold Lloyd played Doc Brown in “Back to the Future.”

    Shoe: Unfortunately, Fat Elvis jokes don’t really “fly” in a strip where one or more of the main characters is morbidly obese.

  3. cheech wizard
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    A3G – “She’s not like that. LuAnn likes girls. At least, I hope she likes girls. Please don’t crush my dreams.”

  4. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:34 am [Reply]

    Pluggers: I call shenaningans. Pluggers don’t use fancy words like “perplexed”.

    Mary Worth: Damn these Ikea “wall-mounted drop-leaf” tables! (Is that a Bjursta or a Norbo?) And there’s graffitti on the wall – can’t we eat somewhere nice?

  5. Christopher
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:35 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: I’m thinking of future generations, Senator! [PUNCH!!!]
    Senator: [Picking himself up off the floor and rubbing his sore jaw.] What the…what the hell has gotten into you, Trail? Have you gone insane?
    Mark Trail: I…I don’t know, Senator…I…this has always solved everything in the past. Um…would you like to go fishing?

  6. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:37 am [Reply]

    Ack, can’t even spell “shenanigans”. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it.

  7. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:37 am [Reply]

    A3G-I thought Marty’s dad was with Lu Ann when did Blondie show up.

    Crankshaft-”Seriously, kid. If you keep asking dumb questions there’s a spot in my backyard that needs to be fertilized.”

    FC-Looks like the brain parasites have taken over Mommy.

    Gasoline Alley-The bottom of the river?

    Gil Thorp-Ah yes, the traditional burning of the cheerleader.

    JP-And if we zoom in on this area here we see your husband. Wave and see if he notices you.

    Love Is-Or until he dies and she gets a new one.

    MT-”Seriously, Mark. I’ve seen the briefcase that you call a laptop.”

    MW-Meanwhile Aggie despondent over no one helping her with her problem got drunk and drove her car off a cliff.

    RMMD-What? Now I have to find a real school for Sarah to go to or worse actually have her around here all day.

  8. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:41 am [Reply]

    Phantom: “… Folks, this is the only time this year we’re asking for donations … You’ll be seeing such quality shows as ‘punching the bad guy’, ‘sneaking around the bushes’, ‘jungle frolics’, ” …”

    Crankshaft: Next: “What is this ‘fruit’ of which you speak and what’s it got do to with my lemonade?”

    Slylock: “My ancestors were dinosaurs, mammal. I mock you with impunity and you know it.”

    Hi and Lois: Archie and Jughead sure look different today.

    Funky Winkerbean: Oh, Batuik, you scamp, pretending you’ve heard of “Three dimensional characters”!

    Tina’s Groove: Worst Fanservice Extra ever?

    Judge Parker: “World wide scams. An exotic location. A kidnapped relative. Plan your daring rescue with a big cup of One Step Ahead tea. It’s the taste of excitement, with a lasting sense of self-satisfaction.”

  9. Amos Snarkadder
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:41 am [Reply]

    MW – Yoga! Aggie just needs a big ol’ dose of yoga!

  10. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:42 am [Reply]

    Family Circus: Tenser, said the Tensor.

  11. Mumblix Grumph
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:43 am [Reply]

    Mama: Ha ha, it’s funny because Francis is as hot a date as cancer.

  12. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:46 am [Reply]

    Curtis: Again with the “eskimos”? This strip really has gone downhill since it was bought by Big Muktuk. (Note to Editor, please change to “Big Pemmican” for syndication.)

    Marmaduke: Is Josh guest writing this? Anyway, Marmaduke truly is “he who must not be named”.

  13. Flonatin of Bologna
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:47 am [Reply]

    Crankshaft: “It’s what I’m about to do to your foot, whippersnapper.”

    Marvin: Well, unless you find the another coprophile, which isn’t out of the question.

    FC: This is the first strip since the 1960s that Dysfunctional Family Circus wouldn’t change.

  14. Chareth Cutestory
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:48 am [Reply]

    Gil Thorp: My sabermetrics analysis on the Mudlarks teams always begins with the same note each year: “Don’t assemble athletes around bonfire at start of season inhaling smoke fumes.” Glad to see that now the cheerleading squad is also enjoying the performance non-enhancement of smoke from old couches and other garbage.

  15. Écureuil Écumant
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:52 am [Reply]

    FC: “Did you see me listening to Dolly?” I guess with all our modern-day multitasking we kinda start confusing the functions of our physical senses. Was Thel leaning over Dolly with hand conspicuously cupped around ear? Then how would you see her listening?

    Judge Judy does the same: “Can’t you see I’m not listening to you”? No, dear, not unless you take a couple fingers out of your other orifices and place one firmly in each ear canal with elbows cocked ostentatiously to each side.

    See what I’m sayin’?

  16. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:53 am [Reply]

    The Amazing Spider-Man: “¡Jefe! ¡I can’t believe it actually worked!” “Sí, Miguel. El bolillo es tan stúpido. Now, get the drainpipe ready while I pointlessly explain my evil plan to the Tarantula’s sister.”

    Apt. 3-G: Right you are, Marty. Lu Ann doesn’t notice anything.

    9 Chickweed Lane: So apparently the joke is that if you waste Judge Thorax’s time, you get the same treatment that you meted out to cows? You know, if somebody tried to do this with McEldowney himself, they’d call it <sarcasm> “assault with a deadly weapon.” </sarcasm> Stupid “they.” At least we’ll be spared three weeks of Fleurrie sexually manipulating the court room, presumably because we need to get back to Edda sexually manipulating whoever it is she’s sexually manipulating this week. Is there any legal reason I shouldn’t give myself a baseball bat upside the head?

    The Family Circus: Okay, credit where it’s due. This is probably a very old joke, but I thought it was cute.

    Judge Parker: I get why we can’t have wall-to-wall jugs in this strip. But if we can’t have that, can we at least have our violent cruise ship storyline back, please? Heck, even Judge Parker, Sr. getting pissy with the help is more interesting than this.

    Luann: Ah, a strawman (woman in this case) proves herself to be stupid and hypocritical at the same time! Why, I haven’t seen that kind of trenchant social commentary since…oh, fuck me.

    Mark Trail: Wait, did Mark just diss Lost Forest in panel one? And did the Senator just tell him to go get stuffed in panel two? And since when does Mark Trail “think of future generations”? Oh right, since the other week, thanks to TRMT. COLOR ME CONFUSED anyway.

    The following is a monthly reminder that if you’re not reading Scary Go Round, you’re missing a treat. If you’re not reading Scary Go Round, you’re missing a treat. This concludes our monthly reminder. Stay tuned for more Keith-related news.

    Slylock Fox: I gotta hand it to Bob Weber, Jr.: most newspaper comics artists (coff coff Frank Bolle) couldn’t make two panels identical if they tried. But Weber? He goes and creates only the most subtle differences, and then makes a game out of them! Well played, Sir, well played.

  17. nescio
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:54 am [Reply]

    FC: The dog’s sleep is interrupted because he hasn’t learned to completely ignore Thel like Bil has.

  18. Jack Scat
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:54 am [Reply]

    FC. Bil needs to reboot his Stepford wife. He may have to restore the linguistic output drivers.

  19. Mikey
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:54 am [Reply]

    ASM- “The two Costumed Fools approach!” Hmmmm, this is very much off-script for Newspaper Spiderman. The second panel should show Tarantula dragging Spiderman into the prison, unconscious, after he knocked himself out getting out of the car.

  20. Little Blue Bicycle
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:56 am [Reply]

    MT, continued:
    “I’m thinking of future generations, Senator.”
    “I’m thinking of money, Trail. I’m a Senator yet I live in this aging split-level in a development that never took off. Look how high the grass is.”
    “But the wilderness area….”
    “Plus the deer eavesdrop constantly. They listen to me, Trail. They’re up to no good.”
    “Deer, Senator….”
    “Plus I can’t get Jack Elrod’s ghostly orb off my wallet. I’m thinking about calling those TAPS people, or maybe the one who wears the tattoo shirts and yells at the spirits.”
    “Zak, from Ghost Adventures.”
    “Yes, that’s the one, maybe he can get Elrod’s orb to stop possessing my daughter. Walks around like a giant puppet, talks about big dogs. I hear that you have a big dog, Trail.”
    “Thanks, Senator.”
    “I bet all of you outdoor people do.”

  21. Écureuil Écumant
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:58 am [Reply]

    @Kristian (#4) on MW: “can’t we eat somewhere nice?”

    There surely must be any number of first-rate seafood establishments where salmon squares are purveyed in the Sonora Desert.

  22. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:00 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#1): Oh thank you! That last crack reminded me of Tom Waits’ Singapore, a suitably weird start to any day.

  23. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:00 am [Reply]

    Curtis: Because any eight-year old would know that about life.

  24. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:01 am [Reply]

    @Mr. Yezpitelok (#2): Re: Shoe – why not? They eat like birds. (I’ll show myself out.)

  25. Myrtle
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:02 am [Reply]

    @nescio (#17): Love the sympathetic look on the dog’s face. He knows. Dolly reads to him, too.

  26. Mikey
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:02 am [Reply]

    FW- Ha Ha Ha Ha! I’m with you Bull! It’s tough to win a high school football game when half the team is going through chemo.

  27. Droopy Says
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:03 am [Reply]

    Spider and Spiderer: Could you be a little more specific about the costumed fools, guard? With the way your army shoots and handles helicopters, you could be talking about two of your own soldiers.

  28. pugfuggly
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:04 am [Reply]

    MT One key difference between outdoor and indoor people: indoor people (or ‘innies’) eschew the use of bolding so popular with outdoor people (outties), choosing instead to pepper their speech with long, drawn-out pauses. Mark’s a man of both worlds, however, and quickly puts on his ‘innie speak’ to get down to the senator’s level.

  29. Adam
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:06 am [Reply]

    Aw, I was all excited when I saw “MILF” in the title!

  30. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:06 am [Reply]

    FC: for younger ‘mudges, you may need to be informed that, back in the day, before Dr. Seuss, children’s first-grade readers sounded like that.

  31. LUJBEM FEJF
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:06 am [Reply]

    Marky Mark- Why does Mark’s left hand care so much about future generations?

  32. Oregonian
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:08 am [Reply]

    Wait, did we skip a strip or something? I thought today was the day when Mark Trail would be giving Anne Marie a glimpse of his “big dog.”

  33. Mikey
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:09 am [Reply]

    ‘Shaft- Gaaahh!! Make it stop! God I hope her lemonade was inspired by Jonestown.

  34. Gabacho
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:09 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth – “Look at how far you’ve come, Shannon.” says Mary. Well, let’s do that, shall we? You teach Yoga in a generic spa. Your people skills suck. You have no idea how to deal with an upset customer. You freak out at one complaint from a psycho. You’re only friend is Mary Worth. That’s a very short distance in the grand scheme of things. But still, progress.

    Apt 3G – Are teen girls wearing high collar, bosom concealing blouses in New York City nowadays? Because they’re not anywhere else.

  35. Samantha C
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:10 am [Reply]

    Mark has to dress up as one of the blind, hairless indoors tribe in order to obtain an audience with their laird. A powerful commentary on power imbalances and the marginalisation of the ‘little guy’ – in this get-up, it is impossible for Mark to punch.

  36. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:11 am [Reply]

    Reflecting on Josh’s literal interpretation of “outdoor people,” it occurs to me that really the only outdoor people left these days are survivalists, the odd hunter-gatherer, and the homeless. It’s pleasing to think of a coalition of feral outdoor people rising up with a terrible, bloodthirsty vengeance to reclaim Lost Forest as their rightful patrimony. If this were only the 1980′s, I could have gotten a fat paycheck to turn that concept into a movie.

  37. Tom, the Sailor Man
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:15 am [Reply]

    “We can’t live in the past anymore”
    “We’ve got to progress”
    “You outdoor people are unrealistic”

    Is the senator talking to Mark or Jack Elrod?

  38. TheDiva
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:18 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tori is confused as to why Marty doesn’t want to hear her dad having sex.

    FC: Hearing Divaling One “read” (ie. recite for memory) Where the Wild Things Are has been one of the highlights of momhood so far. Good to know I will soon become disillusioned and resentful of it.

    Momma: Shallow, egotistical, and vaguely sexist? Yeah, I can see why he’s beating the girls off with a stick.

    MT: I’m sure this will be a discussion of environmentalism and conservation pitched on the level and intelligence of a Captain Planet episode.

  39. Maltmasher
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:18 am [Reply]

    FC- I think they didn’t print the caption under the circle where it says “this is the last thing Mel said before stabbing Bil with a butcher’s knife, drowning the kids and perishing in a fire set in the bedroom.”

  40. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    GF: as I mentioned yesterday. *dooks*

    Lio: *chuckle*

    Bizarro: /fail. and a waste of an Oreo.

    Blondie: way to join the new decade, Dag.

    JUMBLE: hrmph. and all this time, I thought he was a Mets fan.

    RwO: *snurk*

    6Cx: if only.

  41. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:24 am [Reply]

    Love Is . . . the horizontal mambo.

    (a Little Naked Girl in my life a little bit of Monica on the side. . . )

  42. TheDiva
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:26 am [Reply]

    9CL: And we couldn’t have done this months ago because…?

    FW: Day 1,503,532 of “The Scapegoats suck.”

    Marvin: Well, at least Marvin will never procreate.

    MW: Yeah, she’s eating mush with an old biddy. Livin’ the high life, that.

    Pibgorn: Romeo’s expression is less “O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!” and more “The tag of her dress is poking up in back–should I let her know or just fix it for her?”

    SM: Can’t argue with that…

  43. Écureuil Écumant
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:28 am [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#36): “If this were only the 1980?s, I could have gotten a fat paycheck to turn that concept into a movie”

    Yeah, and you’d’ve been writing the screenplay on the promenade deck of a cruise liner while a buxom CIA wench scanned the environs for neighbourhood terrierists.

  44. Midtown
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:29 am [Reply]

    @LUJBEM FEJF (#31): re MT: “Listen to the hand, before it goes all fist on you.”

    How hard would it have been to have the speech balloon connector in the vicinity of Mark’s mouth? They’re just messing with us now.

  45. Everything Is Better with Monkeys
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:30 am [Reply]

    Momma: knowing it to be a Federally-protected legacy strip, the editor doesn’t make an effort to clean all of the snack-food crumbs off of the strip before submitting it to the papers.

  46. Raghead The Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:34 am [Reply]

    As a dentist, I’d have thought Marty and her friend ought to be more concerned about that swelling of Marty’s jaw. It’s probably an ameloblastoma and will require hemi-mandibular resection pretty soon.

  47. Dennis Jimenez
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    MT – When Mark’s dick talks – people listen – got that E. F. Hutton….

    GT – Beat Oakwood – Beat Wood – Beat WOOD – BEAT WOOD!!!

    FC – May I barf now – you are so unattractive muttering this rap, I wouldn’t even consider humpping your leg….

    Momma – Pardon – I must change my chair before delivering this zinging punch line – there, that’s better – now pull my finger….

    A3G – Your dad is super hot! I mean Henry Kissinger hot!!!

    Adios Amigos, DJ.

  48. Pozzo
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    “Don’t you want to know what your Dad and Blondie are up to?”

    “Well, I think they’re going to open with ‘One Way or Another’ and save ‘Heart of Glass’ for an encore.”

  49. Raghead The Fiendly Neighbourhood Terrorist
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    @ 42. TheDiva

    Because Brooke finally ran out of genius and decided what we all need is to be forced to watch Thorax anally raping hairy farmers with a baseball bat. Then, mercifully, we might move on to newer, though not better, things.

  50. Rocky Stoneaxe
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    @Mr. Yezpitelok (#2): Gil: I knew an 18-year-old who thought comedian Harold Lloyd played Doc Brown in “Back to the Future.”

    Well, to be fair…

    Both Harold Lloyd’s “Safety Last!” (1923) and “Back to the Future” (1985) feature characters — played by Harold and Christopher Lloyd, respectively — dangling precariously from a giant clock. The scene in “Future” is supposed to be an homage
    to the earlier film, I think.

  51. pugfuggly
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:41 am [Reply]

    A3G This is the most unappealing re-imagining of American Beauty ever!

    Momma Well, at least Francis is honest about one thing: it’s not his looks that turn girl’s heads. At least not in the good way.

  52. Not Worth It
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    ASM – I see the Costa Verdians have given up trying to speak Spanish, and just talk English like normal people.

  53. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:44 am [Reply]

    MT – “Well, my friend, we can’t live in the past anymore … we’ve got to progress!”

    “Yeah right, senator, try telling that to Jackelrod!”

    “You outdoor people can be a bit unrealistic, especially Jackelrod! I’ve heard that even TRMT has a hard time trying to convince him to be more realistic!”

    “I’m only thinking of future generations, senator!”

    “Mark, Mark, Mark, the LAST thing future generations of people are going to care about is being an outdoors person … they’ll be too busy looking down while texting and walking into walls!”

    PEOPLE?! No, senator, you’ve got me all wrong … I’m not thinking of PEOPLE! *smirk* I’m only thinking of all the future generations of PANCAKES I’ll miss out on eating in my cozy little cabin!”

    “Christ, Mark, you can eat your lousy pancakes anywhere! Besides, you’re only home at your cabin for about one hour every six months or so! …And don’t forget, Mark, we pay a tidy sum for outdoor people like you to relocate to a nearby area!”

    “$$$! WOW! You are right, senator! PAVE that pathetic place and put in a parking lot! WHERE do I go to collect that tiidy sum, senator?”

    “Mark, have you ever heard of Soylent Green?”

  54. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:47 am [Reply]

  55. remmy
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:47 am [Reply]

    9CL: Geez la fuck – this is how it ends? WTF to infinity McDouche. Serious waste of ink, paper and everybody’s time you son of a bitching hack!!!

  56. KreatureFeatures
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:50 am [Reply]

    Funky: I see that Bull is moonlighting for Red Blazer Realty now. He should throw in the following plug at the end of his interview: “You’ll go nuts for Lionel’s huts!”

  57. pugfuggly
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    Crock Is that company ‘L’? I hear they smell…

    FW I dunno, coach, I imagine if you included yourself on the list, your team would probably be solid in the ‘width’ department, on average.

    H&L “Not so fast. I hear that Martha likes a lot of the same things you do, if you get my drift…”

    JP Nothing like a rousing game of Tactical Cruise Missile Strike: the Home Edition

    MW “Care for a piece of my bubble-gum plate? I don’t think I can finish it all on my own…”

  58. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:52 am [Reply]

    MT – The outdated simulated leather blue diamond tufted 1955 chair interupts their conversation to let the senator know it’s thinking of future generations of chairs? WEIRD!!

  59. Master Softheart
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    Momma-Meta: “Let’s ignore the joke in today’s Momma (not hard!) and contemplate Thomas’s pants for a minute.” Josh, did you really write that? When I reached the end of that sentence, my eyes determined that, for my own good, a brief but brutally effective coup against my brain was required to prevent me from reading anything that could follow those words. I suspect that they were right.

    Of course, my eyes have been blurring out the dialog in 9CL for over a week now, so I’m inclined to trust their judgment.

    SF: Ted is so cute when he’s competent! If he didn’t work very hard distracting himself from reality with Saturday morning cartoons from the 80′s, he would probably be quite dangerous.

    Phantom! Kit’s self-confidence and mook-whomping competence are so great that they form a kind of karmic balance with Spider Man. No matter how self-parodyingly ineffective, whiny, petty, and inept Peter Parker becomes, The Phantom will always be there, without superpowers or daytime soap operas, enthusiastically punching skull-shaped indentations into evil like the the industrial stamping press of justice.

    FC: I laughed unironically at the Family Circus. After the trial, when I am being sent to a re-education camp, I will try to reduce my sentence by pleading that I have been teaching a three year old to read.

    One thing is certain: Thel has better material, comic timing, and delivery than the cast of Funky Winkerbean or anyone aside from the cat in 9 CL.

    Gil Thorp(e): Since Tip can probably bench press the Milford’s offensive line and every male student in the school just now realized that his after school activity centers around looking up cheerleaders’ skirts, I suspect that no one will make fun of the boy on the cheerleading squad.

  60. Master Softheart
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:58 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#1): “Mark, the surveyor’s results were very positive: we think that, with the right fracking chemicals, we can recover thousands of barrels per day from Rusty. I know you outdoor people can be sentimental, but fully exploiting him could create hundreds of good paying jobs that our state needs and help America become energy-independent.”

  61. aphthakid
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:01 am [Reply]

    @Adam (#29): It’s not just MILFs, it’s a MILFERNO! A very sexy new movie coming soon to the SyFy Channel.

  62. aphthakid
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:03 am [Reply]

    MOMMA: Is this strip sent to newspapers via a mid-80′s model fax machine?

  63. Tom, the Sailor Man
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:04 am [Reply]

    @aphthakid (#63):
    Is that the sequel top MILFnado?

  64. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:10 am [Reply]

    MW: Yes, look how far you’ve come, Shannon! It hardly took you any time at all to turn a minor incident into an enormous career-threatening catastrophe entirely within your mind! (OK, Mary helped.)

    @Baka Gaijin (#Y217): Sadly, no kitties out of that machine. I think it sells slippers you use in the cat cafe it sits in front of, in Seoul, Korea.

    Don’t destroy my dreams! You monster! I should have known not to trust the South Koreans! They play by their own rules! Now I’m afraid I’ll lose my job at the Pox Wellness Resort!

  65. Odie Odo
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:10 am [Reply]

    Birdbrains: Just wait until he finds out the same “son of a #@$%*” forgot to restock the toilet paper!

  66. John C Fremont
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    I don’t know what to say. My only real laugh of the day came from Family Circus!

    I – I think I need to lie down.

  67. Kevin on Earth
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    ASM: tarantula: “Two costumed fools would be arriving in a flaming car if the gringo here hadn’t lit it up so early.”.
    Spidey: “didn’t I say I was sorry?”

  68. Rusty
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:14 am [Reply]

    Momma: Lazarus may be trying to depict “Whale Pants” on Thomas. These are basically chinos or khakis embroidered with random symbols, like whales or Georgia bulldogs. They can be viewed at golf courses in New England, and football tailgates in the South. They are only approximated here, as Lazarus now draws the strip on bedsheets using black spray paint, due to his failing eyesight.

  69. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:14 am [Reply]

    @Master Softheart (#60): Phantom: I wonder if it’s meant to be a “Death of a Salesman” reference? You know, that guy who didn’t even have to visit customers anymore, he just made some phone calls from his hotel room and made sales.
    (Dave Singleman, thanks web searching engines.)

    Kit Walker: The Ghost who is well Liked.

  70. Anonymous
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    If Mark Trail beats up the Senator, he will become the Senator (that’s how it works, right?). Then we can look forward to Mister Trail Goes to Washington.

    “You think I’m licked. You all think I’m licked.”

    “The Gentleman from Lost Forest is informed that no one has licked him.”

  71. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    MT: “You outdoor people”……Hey! I resemble that remark!

  72. Mikey
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    Come and listen to a story ‘bout a man named Mark,
    A handsome Outdoorsman who would punch you on a lark,
    Then one day he was walking through the woods,
    And he came upon a poacher that was up to no good,

    Well the first thing you know there’s an elk lyin’ dead,
    Dusty come upon it , say’s “They shot it in the head”,
    Mark he punches Dusty then he gets up on his horse,
    Now the story’s changed to Senators and oil, of course,

    Elrod that is…..
    Loose threads….
    Random trees…

  73. Amos Snarkadder
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    MT “I’m thinking of future generations, Senator!”
    If by “future generations” you mean Rusty, you best save your thoughts, Mark.

  74. Odie Odo
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    I’m surprised Mastroianni didn’t do an “Agony of De Feet” joke in today’s B.C.

  75. Oh, See Shrug Quibble. Quibble, Shrug, Quibble.
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:21 am [Reply]

    @Lumaca Morente (#30):

    True, though I don’t think they would have included a word as hard/long as “listen.” And there should be an “Oh” or two sprinkled in there.

  76. Amos Snarkadder
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:22 am [Reply]

    @Mikey (#74): Bravo!

  77. Master Softheart
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:30 am [Reply]

    @Kristian (#71): Of course, it’s well known that nearly half of Death of a Salesman was edited out before being released – mild mannered Willy Loman was actually the alter ego of a superhero who was also much more effective than Spider Man, so this probably is an homage of some sort.

  78. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:35 am [Reply]

    9CL: *pounds head on desk*

  79. Odie Odo
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    Herb & Jamaal: The road is filled with traffic and there’s not a single customer dining at H & J’s “beastro.” I guess the word finally got around about those health dept. violations!

  80. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    Pibgorn: Truly, Gilligan’s Island’s Hamlet was more respectful of the Bard’s work than this.

  81. Braniff
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    FC: Hopefully in the next circle, Mommy will go Kathleen Turner (as in the War of the Roses movie) with Daddy; they would tear up the house and try to kill each other. Hopefully this nightmare on Melon(head) Street will soon end. . .

  82. The Ben
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:49 am [Reply]

    “It’d be more impressive if we still had rings – nine of them, in concentric circles, descending straight into the firey bowels of mankind’s damnation! Here, I have some sketches in my notebook, let me show you.”

  83. Anondod
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: I wonder what Mark’s real plan is here. It’s obvious that his talk about future generations is nonsense, since he doesn’t plan to reproduce ever ever ever and the only person younger than himself he has regular contact with is Rusty, who would be right at home in any type of post-prosperity wasteland (nuclear fallout optional). Is he trying to bring about the animal uprising we see chronicled in Slylock Fox? We already know that the animals in Lost Forest fluctuate wildly in size and occasionally speak. Does Rusty grow up to become Count Weirdly?

    So many questions.

  84. Everything Is Better With Monkeys
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:53 am [Reply]

    Oh man, I just looked at today’s Mary Worth. You have to work awfully hard to get perspective so incredibly wrong. That first panel is a master class.

  85. Dennis Jimenez
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:58 am [Reply]

    @Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy (#73): Well I certainly don’t think Mark “resembles” it -he don’t live outdoors – he lives in a cabin – and you may assume he’s a liberal, tree-hugging democrat, but he’s not – he’s a conservationist in the vein of Teddy Roosevelt – you might say he’s a Log Cabin Republican….

  86. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    Gil Thorp-Oh Mighty Gil Thorp, we offer you this cheerleader in exchange for your blessing and strength to beat Oakwood.

  87. greghousesgf
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    Some of the weird random dots in the background of Momma have apparently migrated to that one guy’s pants.

  88. I speak Jive
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:07 am [Reply]

    Momma – Josh, take a look at Francis’s pants. I can’t figure out if they are supposed to be striped or wide-wale corduroy. In either case the stripes or lines would not look like that.

    Family Circus – There is a serious continuity error here. Hasn’t Dolly been portrayed as all smug about how she loves books? Maybe she’s just been looking at the pictures all this time.

    Rex Morgan – Heather is going to sell her school? Why isn’t she offering to give it to June?

    Funky W – I hate that heavy-lidded expression as much as I hate the smirks these characters usually wear.

  89. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:09 am [Reply]

    @I speak Jive (#90): Family Circus – There is a serious continuity error here.

    Don’t tell me you didn’t know about the reboot!

  90. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:09 am [Reply]

    MT-But Mark outdoor people can’t live in the woods. The natural habitat of outdoor people is the city.

  91. Brad
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:11 am [Reply]

    Wait, what’s that coming out of Ma Keane’s mouth? Do I detect… sarcasm? If not for those aquifers recently found in Kenya, this might qualify as this week’s most unexpected discovery.

  92. Firefly
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    Apt. 3 G: So I haven’t been keeping up with this strip, but are these two characters supposed to be Margo and Tommie as teenagers from the 1950s who’ve teleported to the present? That’s my theory regarding their clothes no teen would wear anyway.

    MW: Mary will not leave Pax Wellness Spa until Godot checks in.

  93. Paul1963
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    A3G (and Josh): Well, of course stupid people get horny. If they didn’t, presumably there would be fewer of them…

  94. Shrug, Being Syruptious
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:17 am [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#87):

    Certainly he’s a “Log Cabin” guy; what are pancakes without them?

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

  95. Downpuppy unskewed
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    @Everything Is Better With Monkeys (#86): My favorite part is the way Mary Worth’s & Shannon’s tiny plates aren’t even directly in front of them.

  96. Amos Snarkadder DBA Curmudgeon Farm
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    A3GRRL Tori really needs a makeover. That hair! Such a fright!
    Who could help her? Luann? No, she’d just wind up looking like Margo.
    Oh, I know!

    Marty! She’s very artistic!

  97. Shran
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    GT: So, the Mudlarks take part in religious practices involving human sacrifices and false prophets all so they can win sporting events?

    http://youtu.be/gndH9mhHPk0?t=28s

  98. Shrug, Not Having Any Trouble With These Pants
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    One guy in MAMA seeks to attract girls by his (alleged) brains and personality; the other relies on courage and handicraft skills; clearly, he has killed a leopard and used the skin to sew his own pants.

    ////Any ‘mudge who replies: Feel free to use the joke “Well spotted, Shrug!”

  99. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:25 am [Reply]

    @Anondod (#85): “Does Rusty grow up to become Count Weirdly?”

    *mind asplodes*

  100. bbofun
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    A3G- Obviously, Tori’s drunk, which explains her “beer goggles.”

    MOMMA- Obviously, Thomas is wearing his leopard skin-patterned tights. He’s going out clubbing later.

    RMMD- Obviously, June is shocked that Heather isn’t going to just give them the school.

    9CL/PIGPORN- Obviously, Brooke’s a hack.

    Obviously, this has been the “obviously” post. Hope you enjoyed it!

  101. bbofun
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    @Shrug, Not Having Any Trouble With These Pants (#100): Dman you! Obviously, I typed too slowly!

  102. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    MT-Maybe because I just finished reading it but this seems to remind me of “The Godfather”. In an effort to continue with his work the Senator will have Mark shot forcing Rusty to take over the family business and eventual eliminating the Senator.

    MW-”And look how far you’ve come. I give my blessing to you and I don’t know anything about you other than that you’re a yoga instructor at this resort.”

    Gil Thorp-But, Tip, do you have any shoes or an outfit to go with the rings?

  103. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    ASM: That guard has a gift for accurately describing what sort of person(s) is/are approaching.

    FW: “Everybody is zero-dimensional, is what I’m saying. I’m talking about all of Westview, not just the team.”

    Luann: There aren’t any guidance counselors who are actually this condescending to students, are there? None of the ones I talked to when I was in school acted like this.

    RMMD: I never expected to laugh at any sentence containing the words “Alzheimer’s disease”, but I laughed at the line “So, you’re going to take this wonderful holiday and talk about Alzheimer’s disease?”. Oh, I wish somebody would care enough to take me on vacation and talk all about Alzheimer’s disease with me! But alas, ’tis not to be…

  104. Kristian
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:45 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#91): Don’t tell me you didn’t know about the reboot!

    I preferred pre-crisis Barfy.

  105. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    9CL-What a travesty of a comic strip this is. This is not how courts operate.

  106. sally
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    @Lumaca Morente (#30):

    Exactly! Back in the day. Before Dr. Seuss. Why the !#$# would anyone read Dick and Jane to a child in the fifty years since?????? Thel changed her hairstyle at least once since Dr. Seuss. She is not immune to modern — well, at least 1970′s — culture. So why?????

  107. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:56 am [Reply]

  108. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:57 am [Reply]

    @Shrug, Not Having Any Trouble With These Pants (#100): Yes, I too saw Thomas’ pants as leopard print, and probably velour, to go with that groovy 1960s style Greek fisherman’s cap.

  109. Joshua
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:59 am [Reply]

    @Liam (#107): I think that ship sailed a few weeks ago, when Edda was allowed to testify that she had been murdered by Fleurrie.

  110. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:00 am [Reply]

    @Écureuil Écumant (#43):

    Yeah, and you’d’ve been writing the screenplay on the promenade deck of a cruise liner while a buxom CIA wench scanned the environs for neighbourhood terrierists.

    You say that like it’s a bad thing.

  111. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    @Kristian (#8):

    Tina’s Groove: Worst Fanservice Extra ever?

    *dares to look*

    Blech.

    @Droopy Says (#27): No, those would be uniformed fools.

    @Lumaca Morente (#30): I remember that far back. Much to my chagrin.

    @TheDiva (#38):

    FC: Hearing Divaling One “read” (ie. recite for memory) Where the Wild Things Are has been one of the highlights of momhood so far. Good to know I will soon become disillusioned and resentful of it.

    Possibly unknown fact: in Calvin & Hobbes, “Hamster Huey and the Gooey Kablooie” first appeared in a throwaway panel, with Calvin’s dad showing him the book and saying something like “I think you’ll like this one.” Oh, if he’d only known what kind of Pandora’s Box he was opening…

    @TheDiva (#42):

    9CL: And we couldn’t have done this months ago because…?

    He gets paid by the strip, apparently. By people who like to piss away good money.

    @Not Worth It (#52): Hey, you’re right! No pointy brackets!

    @bbofun (#102): Obviously we enjoyed it.

  112. Mibbitmaker
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:01 am [Reply]

    @Midtown (#44): Maybe TRMT is lobbing us softballs now…?

  113. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:02 am [Reply]

    MT – Is that an abandoned canoe in the overgrown grass under the word balloon in panel #1 or is it maybe a rusty rear fender from a 1932 Ford? Whatever it is the senator should really think about tending to his yard work rather than waiting for Anne Marie to stop using her i-phone and get off her lazy butt to do it.

  114. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:10 am [Reply]

    @Shrug, Not Having Any Trouble With These Pants (#100):

    That or he’s been having a problem with his pants ever since they became spotted by coming down with the measles.

  115. Marc
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:11 am [Reply]

    @KreatureFeatures (#57): As long as he stays off the West Side. That’s Cookie Kwan’s territory.

  116. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:16 am [Reply]

    MT – “Senator, if developments proceed, you could ruin one of the few remaining beautiful areas in this part of the state!”

    “You have a point there, Trail. This part of the state would have plenty of beautiful areas left if your wife Cherry hadn’t burnt it all to the ground on that damn camping trip!”

  117. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#118): Oh, snap! If someone in the strip would dare to be so sassy and truthful, it would really make my day!

  118. Jon I Am
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:24 am [Reply]

    FW: Much like this strip.

    Everyone in this strip either looks insufferably smug, suicidally depressed or half asleep. There doesn’t seem to be any middle ground.

  119. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:27 am [Reply]

    Since 9CL is currently the kind of strip I look at to snark at, and get annoyed by reading, and hasn’t yet crossed into Pibgorn territory where I’ve gotten so disgusted by it I don’t even want to look any more because it’s not even worth it for snark fodder, here are some more thoughts on it:

    Okay, let’s assume for the sake of argument that the cow was being hit as hard as Fleurrie described (which I don’t want to go back and find the strip for, but as I recall it was really fucking hard, and repeatedly), and that there actually was abuse going on. And let’s also go ahead and assume that she took the cow instead of reporting the abuse to the authorities not because she was an impulsive idiot (which is itself a fair assumption based on what I’ll get into), but because she believed that reporting it wouldn’t do any good because they’d go “Meh, it’s just a cow, who cares?”

    If that were true and if Fleurrie were a completely different kind of character I might have a positive opinion of her.

    But she isn’t and I don’t, because she’s done such wonderful things as:

    -Firing Sven just so she could go on a date with him, apparently without him being in on the reasoning behind it or being aware that she’d hire him back immediately afterwards;
    -Going to a steakhouse and being seated for a meal, only deciding once she’s ready that she’s suddenly a vegetarian and she isn’t really interested in anything on the menu other than salad;
    -Being resentful of her client for breaking up her date with an emergency phone call, even though it was a legitimate emergency and if she’s supposed to care so much about animals then she ought to be willing to sacrifice her time;
    -Assuming the farmer who called her didn’t give a shit about the well-being of his cow, when it was shown on-panel that he was really worried about her;
    -Yelling at and threatening the farmer when he tried to use his front loader to pick up his downed cow which, while using the front loader may not have been a good idea (I wouldn’t know), was not an appropriate response;
    -Building a hay fort/windbreak around the cow and assuming it would magically get better on its own overnight, which by itself would never work in real life (we talked about this here when that hapened) since that is only one part of the prescribed treatment for down cows, but which in this strip did work all on its own. And then when she found out, she was radiating smugness and self-satisfaction and I’m pretty sure she said something about how she was an awesome vet. NO YOU ARE NOT;
    -After seeing the cow wasn’t inside the windbreak the following morning, assuming that the farmer had used his front loader to move it while Fleurrie was sleeping right next to it (even though, as Sven pointed out during a comparatively rare moment of sanity, the heavy machinery rolling into the barn would have woken her up), barging into the farmer’s bedroom and screaming at him for being a horrible person, and then not even apologizing after finding out that he hadn’t done anything of the sort;
    -Insulting the cops who arrested her, despite them being pretty professional about it and not mistreating her in any way, and despite them just doing their jobs. It’s not like they can pick and choose who they arrest, Spocket;
    -Spending the whole damn trial mocking and insulting the prosecutor, who is just doing his job.

    I’m probably forgetting some stuff, and it’s depressing to think what kind of useful information may have been pushed out of my brain to make room for these memories of this crap.

    My point is that I don’t think anybody subjecting themselves to the past seven months of this strip would have a positive opinion of Fleurrie Spocket, no matter where they stood on animals rights or what kind of diet they had.

  120. Kevin on Earth
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:28 am [Reply]

    MT:

    Senator: “You outdoor people and your fancy otter-skin suits”
    Mark: {eyes dart left and right}

  121. DaveyK
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    At Mommy Keane’s murder trial, Prosecutors revealed that the final straw came when Daddy Keane pointed out that it wasn’t terribly accurate to suggest he would be able to “see her listening to Dolly” since it required auditory input to confirm that she could be, indeed, listening.

  122. aphthakid
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:36 am [Reply]

    @Tom, the Sailor Man (#65): MILFERNO! is the soul-shattering climax to the epic MILFQUAKE! trilogy.

  123. Odie Odo
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#91): Don’t tell me you didn’t know about the reboot!

    It’s the “Earth 2″ version of Family Circus where Big Daddy Keane became a vivisectionist instead of a cartoonist.

  124. seismic-2
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    @Pozzo (#48): Good one!

  125. Mibbitmaker
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    MW: Stupid, stupid Aggie!

    MT: But… but Trail ACTUALLY LIVES IN THE PAST! Literally.
    Those “future generations”? That’s us.

    Curtis: Yeah, nice one, Mr. Philosophy.

    FW: They basically don’t exist!

  126. Majicou
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:42 am [Reply]

    Let’s hope today’s 9CL is the conclusion of a would-be satire so facile and lifeless it should make a lot of people want to apologize to Mark Russell. Brooke seems to fancy himself Franz Kafka and Kurt Vonnegut rolled into one big ol’ burrito of genius, but he did undercut himself a little by having his tertiary Mary Sue and his author avatar be the ones perverting the legal system so far it should’ve specified a safe word. This… thing started with Dr. Fleurrie Spocket (FUCKING SERIOUSLY!?) lording her mental and moral superiority over the villainous, anthropoid farmers–not directly to them, of course, since they were merely props and not characters, not fit to engage in more than a few lines of dialogue–progressed (if you can call it that) with the same, and ended with the same. What dramatic turns! The designated protagonist was never the underdog, never the victim. At no time was she not smugly superior to the situation, even when she was raging at having to do her fucking job. Then, when the courtroom portion of the whole mess hove into view, the judge was yet another limb of the Burberian hive-mind (those who think like Brooke, as opposed to everyone else), and there was literally no possibility of things turning against Dr. Hostile Work Environment. The most ham-fisted, spelling-challenged fan-fiction author would be ashamed to post such a limp, unengaging waste of pixels. Not only does Brooke not live up to his own estimation of his writing ability, he is appallingly bad, and he understands both drama and comedy less well than the average 8-year-old.

    Oh, and his art fucking sucks, too. He can’t draw backgrounds, and if he had Only Six Faces, his face repertoire would increase by a factor of about three.

  127. COTW unofficial selection committee
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:47 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#118):
    COTW! COTW! COTW! COTW! COTW! COTW! COTW! COTW!!!

  128. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:00 pm [Reply]

    an extra puppy for bb,u.

  129. digupthebones
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:00 pm [Reply]

    Archie: Wish I still got a physical paper so I could play tic-tac-toe on the back of Archie’s head.

    Curtis: “Eskimo Chutney” sounds freakin’ delicious.

    Ziggy: She’s just askin’ what we’ve all been thinkin’.

  130. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:02 pm [Reply]

    @Majicou (#128): *ands Majicou a glass of water to help with rant recovery.*

    good thing I kept the True Fable Rant Mug handy.

  131. Majicou
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:06 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#132): Thank you. Probably better have a few pints of Dragon’s Milk after that, though.

  132. bats :[
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:08 pm [Reply]

    FC: poor trapped Mommy.

    Meanwhile, near Lost Forest…

    Oh, hey, I notice that flckr.com will be down 9 PM-5 AM tonight — any guesses on the “newest” improvements?

  133. Alter Ego
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:10 pm [Reply]

    Ziggy – It’s pornographic? Must be the new “love is…” cereal.

  134. Everything Is Better with Monkeys
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:13 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#121): what a great summation of the eternal hell of slipshod storytelling and character building this strip has been. You forgot the hell that awaits her for insulting Johnny Cash. In 9 months, you can sum up the interminable lunch from Mary Worth.

  135. Mincemeat
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:15 pm [Reply]

    DtM: Well, I was going to run errands today, but then I was introduced to the concept of Dennis and Margaret acting out the plot of “The Blue Lagoon,” and now I have to spend the entire day vomiting.

  136. heims57
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:19 pm [Reply]

    A3G: Wait…what? Marty’s dad is Simon Cowell and he’s banging Blondie? Sounds like a case of justifiable homicide to me, Dagwood. PLEASE.

  137. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:21 pm [Reply]

    @Mibbitmaker (#127):

    And yesterday I went to the Lost Forest Outlet Mall for their annual Patriot’s Day sale. I got accosted by a homeless person wanting to take him fishing.

  138. Joe Blevins
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:22 pm [Reply]

    MT: How interesting that the expression “talk to the hand” has finally made it to Lost Forest. More interesting still is that the phrase has been interpreted so literally.

    FC: Bil seems only dimly aware that something called “parenting” is going on in the background of his life. To him, everything Thel is saying just sounds like a staticky radio playing at a low volume.

    MOMMA: One-step plan for making this comic incredibly funny = Simply imagine that this exchange of dialogue is the first thing either of them has said for hours.

    A3G: These “teens” look like ’70s art teachers. I had one who looked just like Marty. His name was Mr. Barnes.

  139. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:24 pm [Reply]

    FC-Dolly’s a good reader. Definitely, definitely a good reader.

  140. Wayne
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    Momma — It looks like Francis is two different people in the two frames. His hair, face, and shirt are all different. Is it like on Bewitched, when Dick York was replaced by Dick Sargent, except this time it happened mid-episode?

  141. Alter Ego
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:33 pm [Reply]

    Also, let’s not forget how stupid horny people can get.

  142. jim, some guy in iowa
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:35 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#121): I worry about you sometimes, that you can remember so much of the last 7 (!) months of the by turns inane and irritating fiasco known as 9 CL

    somehow, I think it’s going to come out that the Smuckling Bros withdrew charges because Sveth and/or Juliette leaned on them (or just bared their hellmaws)

  143. TheDiva
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:39 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#121): @Majicou (#128): Don’t forget the weeks upon weeks of “Sven drools over Fleurrie in a dress” and “Fleurrie drools over Sven with his glasses off” and “everybody drools over Sven while he sleeps,” all of which were entirely essential to the plot and in no way gratuitously inserted for the author’s self-gratification. I swear the current Mary Worth storyline is more streamlined than this crap.

  144. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    @Alter Ego (#135): you don’t want to know what the marshmallow shapes are in the Love Is cereal.

  145. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:45 pm [Reply]

    @Gabacho (#34): Are teen girls wearing high collar, bosom concealing blouses in New York City nowadays?

    Yup.

    The hipsters among them, at least. (Though the thought that anyone in A3G could be a hipster is bizarre.)

  146. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:48 pm [Reply]

    @Mikey (#74): Long form COTW!

  147. CanuckDownSouth
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:50 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#147): A3G fashion is so out of date that hipsters wear it ironically. The world has come full circle; surely the apocalypse is upon us.

  148. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 12th, 2013 at 12:52 pm [Reply]

    @Majicou (#128): I adore your rant, but especially this phrase: “one big ol’ burrito of genius”.

    ::bows::

  149. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:02 pm [Reply]

    @Everything Is Better with Monkeys (#136): Thanks, although I wouldn’t be able to do the MW thing since it’s not one of the strips I check every day and I pretty much just see whatever Josh and Uncle Lumpy have posted here. From what I’ve seen I doubt it could’ve been anywhere near as frustrating as 9CL, though. Hilariously bad, maybe, but not frustrating.

    @jim, some guy in iowa (#144): I seem cursed to remember stuff that other people are fortunate enough to block out, and to forget stuff I wish I could remember.

    I was going to guess that they dropped the charges because Sven intimidated them into it too (he did mention that they didn’t immediately press charges because they were afraid of him, after all), but decided to wait and see.

    Speaking of that, the first 9CL strip I saw that actually pissed me off was part of a flashback story to WWII. See, this American soldier was dating Juliette’s mother, who was a USO singer in a British POW camp I believe, but she was actually a spy and part of her spying involved feigning interest in a German POW to get him to open up to her. So the Brit CO of the camp called her something like a “Nazi-loving whore” in earshot of the American soldier, and the soldier was pissed off and attacked the CO, beating the shit out of him.

    I’d learn all of that background to the strip I saw much later, but as for the actual strip: it showed the CO, with two black eyes, filing charges against the guy who beat him up. And why wouldn’t he? But the American officer he’s talking to tells him, to paraphrase, “Well, I see here that the guy who beat you up didn’t have a scratch on him, so you’re kind of a wimp if you weren’t even able to hit him back once, aren’t you? Anyway, right now he’s recovering because he got shot on the battlefield fighting the Nazis while you were sitting around here safe and sound, but once he’s healthy then I can get him court-martialed for beating up a coward if you insist on it.”

    See, the Brit was the bad guy and he deserved it because he dared to say something bad about one of the protagonists even though she was giving everybody every reason to believe she was actually in love with a Nazi, and because he wasn’t badass enough to fight off his attacker, apparently. It was similar to what Majicou said earlier: it wasn’t the protagonist that was the underdog here, it was the antagonist. But we were supposed to be happy that the antagonist was beaten to a pulp by somebody bigger and tougher than him (and who started it with a sucker punch, if I’m not mistaken), because reasons.

    Between that and Sven being this great physical specimen, the message seems to be that you can tell who’s right and who’s wrong based on who is able to kick whose ass. Which you would think even Brooke wouldn’t be crazy enough to believe, but who the hell knows?

    @TheDiva (#145):

    I swear the current Mary Worth storyline is more streamlined than this crap.

    Like I said to Everything Is Better With Monkeys, I have no trouble believing that.

  150. Voshkod
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:04 pm [Reply]

    . . . as the flames climbed high in to the night
    to light the sacrificial rite
    I saw Gil Throp laughing with delight
    the day the Mudlarks died.

    He was singing
    So bye, bye, good old Milford High . . . .

  151. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:06 pm [Reply]

    @Mincemeat (#137):
    I saw that ages ago. TYVM for the reminder. : P

  152. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:11 pm [Reply]

    @Majicou (#128): This satire nearly made me feel sympathy for jackbooted thugs and an unfeeling, bureaucratic justice system. I mean, if I had to choose between that and what I’ve had to witness in 9CL these past weeks … I could maybe see myself siding with the jackbooted thugs.

  153. Bootsy
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    @Mikey (#74):

    Refulgent!

  154. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:15 pm [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#81):
    Time to call the KN team.

    FC-Wow, this outdoes Baby Blues, but in a truly neurotic, needs-more-meds manner.
    DollyDollyDollyDollyDollyhauntsyourdreams

    Mama – nice herpes zoster pants there.

  155. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    Oh, and I had a weird dream where I was discovering old DtM, Casper, Archie, and Richie Rich comics, sometimes finding comics within the comics. They were all early 60′s, and the prices were usually 15 or 25 cents (I think one was 11 cents, most likely due to yesterday’s date and significance).

    I do have older comics of all of these, but the dream ones were different.

  156. Cloudbuster
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:20 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#151): Your series of 9CL rants needs to be packaged with his next collection.

  157. Peanut Gallery
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:22 pm [Reply]

    ASM – The last panel answers the question, “What approach are the Spider-Man writers taking to the current story line?”

  158. Amos Snarkadder DBA Curmudgeon Farm
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:32 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#134): Well, they messed up the smartphone app a day or two ago. Or at least I haven’t figured out how to get my photostream in a list anymore.

    BTW, love how Mark is facing down the Senator today! May the first punch be one to the gut.

  159. Dennis Jimenez
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:37 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder DBA Curmudgeon Farm (#160): I’d like to see Mark punch him right square in the suburbs – where his demographics are strongest!!!

  160. Mikey
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:45 pm [Reply]

    Hey Josh, when I first saw “Milferno 2013!” this morning I was worried that “Judge Parker” might be ablaze.

  161. Peanut Gallery
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:47 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Speaker to Spam (#54):

    Being the many years approved,
    this Arranged would definitely
    seize a persons vision with the entire world,
    most definitely all those within the running shoe area.

  162. Dennis Jimenez
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:48 pm [Reply]

    @Mikey (#162): Burn the Mother Down!!!

  163. DAS
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:49 pm [Reply]

    GT: not being a cheerleader myself, in which direction are you supposed to look while holding up another cheerleader? Is it typical to gaze in the direction in which Tip is clearly gazing, or is he using his position as cheerleeder-holder-uper to get a little upskirt peek?

  164. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:50 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#147): You…you mean I’m *back in style again*?
    //weeps softly

  165. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:52 pm [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#152): Thanks for the earworm.

  166. Amos Snarkadder
    September 12th, 2013 at 1:54 pm [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#161): And a kick right up his gerrymander!

  167. Écureuil Écumant
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:19 pm [Reply]

    @aphthakid (#124): Sorry, but if she quakes, she’s no MILF.

  168. Horace Broon
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:23 pm [Reply]

    A3G: “She’s not like that! She’s in love with some ‘Margo’ chick!”

    Crank:
    Dear Tom Batuik,

    The “What are LPs?” gag was never that funny, and its constant repetition over the last decades have not improved it. Casting aimlessly round for something else that has been supplanted by modern technology (and which, therefore, young people will supposedly never have heard of) does not improve it. Just thought you should know, in case you have “What’s a slide projector?” lined up for tomorrow. All the best, Horace Broon.

    P.S. If you want to make an entertaining and timely story about something being supplanted by modern technology, I’m sure we’d all like to see Comics John go out of business because everyone’s getting their comics in digital format.

    DT: If you want to set things right, why not start by explaining who or what Moon Maid is to someone on panel?

    FW: Bull trying to claim the coveted “worst coach ever” award against tough competion from Milford. Gil may be a lousy coach, but he doesn’t go up to Marty Moon and say “Our team is hopeless on every level”. Marty has to trick him into saying it.

  169. Horace Broon
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:25 pm [Reply]

    …Just noticed I used the same phrase twice in my letter to Batuik. It does not improve it.

  170. Horace Broon
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:29 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#105): I never expected to laugh at any sentence containing the words “Alzheimer’s disease”,

    Sir Terry Pratchett’s come up with some nice black humour about his condition. My favourites are “I’d eat the arse out of a dead mole if it gave me a chance!” and “I resolved to make Alzheimer’s sorry it had caught me.”

  171. Alter Ego
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#146): Still more appetizing than the Pibgorn cereal.

  172. Alison
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:46 pm [Reply]

    “Rex Morgan”: I still have no idea what is actually wrong with Milton. He tried to OD on herbal pills? I remember some C-list celebrity said she tried to do that a few years ago and the entire Internet was scoffing at her and saying you can’t OD on herbal meds. Or is it that he has nothing wrong with him, but is convinced he has Alzheimer’s? How is the wee wifey going to talk him out of that one? Or is it that he actually DOES have Alzheimer’s and Heather is in denial? Nobody seems too sure, including Rex who is supposed to be a great doctor. What a bunch of confusing bullshit.

    At any rate, I think it’s great that Heather is ditching the school. Hopefully Widdle Sarah gets a new teacher who sees her for the annoying twerp she is and tells her to take her horsie drawings, sit down, and shut up.

    “Mary Worth”: Shannon, you almost lost your job. It’s probably not a good idea to spend the whole day having lunch. Get back to work! Otherwise Mary will have to write you another letter. “It is wrong to fire Shannon, whom I had an excellent lunch with.”

  173. Mr. Yezpitelok
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:46 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#y244): …John Dill, Cake Decorator/Widow/Mr. Whipple Look-a-like doesn’t really count. He was a widow who was dealing with loss.

    Your reference to John Dill as a “widow” threw me… at first. Obviously, you’re one of the few people to realize that John has ANOTHER hobby/obsession besides cake decorating:

    http://cdn-www.cracked.com/articleimages/dan/lame_heroes/fatal2.jpg

    As the world’s only authorized Apple Mary/Mary Worth impersonator, John battles crime with a song in his heart and rouge on his cheeks!

  174. yaoi huntress earth
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:51 pm [Reply]

    @Majicou (#128): Don’t forget having delusions of being the modern Ambrose Bierce.

  175. I speak Jive
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:53 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#145): And don’t forget Sven turning into a helpless puddle when he paws through Fleurie’s underwear drawer.

    @Ratiocinator (#151): For the love of God, please don’t bring up the Nazi-bonking grandma story! Some of us are trying to forget that piece of crap.

    @Calico (#157): I bought Superman comic books in the early 1960′s, and I remember the uproar when the price increased from 10 to 12 cents.

  176. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:54 pm [Reply]

    GT: “To please our gods and ensure victory we sacrifice a virgin to the mighty fire. Failing that, a relatively monogamous girl.”

    FC: The more broken Thel gets, the funnier the strip is.

    A3G: A teenager who thinks doughy middle-age guys are “super hot.” This is turning into a weird PG rated Lester Burnham fantasy.

    PS If we start seeing Josh-isms on CC merchandise, I vote for a “You’ve got a lot to learn about how horny stupid people can get!” T-shirt.

  177. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:54 pm [Reply]

    MW: And look how far Mary’s come. At her desert getaway she’s trying new things like eating unidentifiable white mush.

    Ziggy: Adult cereal? Is that, like, cornflakes with Jenna Jameson on the box?

    C-Shaft: “This one says ‘postage.’ What is postage? Is it the reason no man would have you?”

    9CL: Thorax reveals that he was only presiding over this sham trial in order to exact some sadistic boarding school jollies. This is by far the most believable part of the storyline.

    JP: If no one objects—or even if someone does—I’m going to imagine Sophie’s “That leaves the road,” in the voice of a monster truck announcer.

    RMMD: Hey, maybe Widdle Sawah will by the school and be her own boss, or something.

    H&L: Martha was going to be called Betty until the hasty late night meeting with the Walker/Browne legal team.

    DT: By this weekend Diet Smith will have thrown Drs Ghote and Sail out of his office window. “WElp, reckon that’s right enough.”

    Phantom: It’s perhaps not the most efficient criminal operation if their capo is paying Norm Macdonald to laugh at his jokes.

    H-Cliff: Sure, if a neighborhood tomcat plays tuba to seduce your housecat, your prime concern will be whether he’s being classy enough about it. Naturally.

  178. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 12th, 2013 at 2:58 pm [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#170):

    P.S. If you want to make an entertaining and timely story about something being supplanted by modern technology, I’m sure we’d all like to see Comics John go out of business because everyone’s getting their comics in digital format.

    Or get shut down because its home to a virulent new strain of MRSA that’s disposing of all Milford’s teens. We’re not picky.

  179. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    @Mincemeat (#137): Sorry to hear that. Maybe this suggestion can make things better: Instead, imagine Dennis and Margaret acting out the history of Catholic/Protestant conflict in Northern Ireland.

  180. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:03 pm [Reply]

    @I speak Jive (#177): I remember when comic books went up to 25 cents. I stopped buying them because it was cutting too severely into my candy money.

  181. TheDiva
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:05 pm [Reply]

    @I speak Jive (#177): Oh God, I’d mercifully forgotten about that part. It’s very telling that it requires at least three of us to keep track of all the levels of suck in this arc.

  182. Vince M
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:05 pm [Reply]

    @The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan (#36): I would love to see Mark Trail going in an Eloi/Morlock direction.

  183. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:18 pm [Reply]

    Spiderman-”Two costumed fools approach!” And the wind begins to howl.

    Phantom-How considerate putting the man on hold while the Phantom kills a man.

  184. Jim in Wisc.
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:30 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#105):

    Luann: There aren’t any guidance counselors who are actually this condescending to students, are there? None of the ones I talked to when I was in school acted like this.

    Only in Greg Evans’ bizarre, demented version of reality.

  185. Braniff
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:31 pm [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#91): Speaking of continuity, why is Mommy reading fairy tales to Billy? Has Billy lost the ability to read Harry Potter? Or will Billy also be going with Mommy in the (hopefully) forthcoming divorce from Daddy?

  186. Braniff
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:34 pm [Reply]

    @Mincemeat (#137): Or Gina could be Dennis’ answer to Marianne–or Jeanie! I wonder if Dennis has ever seen Gilligan’s Island or I Dream of Jeanie?

  187. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:37 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#157),@I speak Jive (#177), @Lumaca Morente (#182): When I was a little kid in the early ’80s, I forget exactly how much comics were 50 cents an issue.

    When I was a teenager, they were a little over a buck an issue. (Cdn.)

    Now they’re like four bucks. Inflation, I know, but I still can’t help thinking that’s asking a lot for a single issue of anything.

    @I speak Jive (#177): Sorry for bringing up the Nazi-bonking Grandma story.

  188. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 3:39 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#189): Ugh, forgot to preview again. I began to type “I forget how much comics were…”, then thought “Hey, I can just go to Comic Vine and find the cover of an old issue!”, so I did that I typed “50 cents” without remembering to change what I’d already typed. >_>

  189. Droopy Says
    September 12th, 2013 at 4:02 pm [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#170): DT: If you want to set things right, why not start by explaining who or what Moon Maid is to someone on panel?

    You mean this surgically-altered-maybe-a-clone-with-failing batteries? I think they’re having a hard time coming up with an explanation that’s even more ridiculous than the original Moon People story.

  190. Lumaca Morente
    September 12th, 2013 at 4:16 pm [Reply]

    @Ratiocinator (#190): You’re too young for that.
    //I thought you were much older because you do tend to ramble a bit.

  191. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    September 12th, 2013 at 4:19 pm [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#170): Thank you for your Crankshaft rant. I am beyond tired of people who think that because a technology has arisen that serves the function of a prior technology, all examples of that earlier technology have suddenly been wiped from the face of the earth and the memories of everyone under the age of, say, about 30.

    See radio, LPs, landline phones (or even rotary phones), television, desktop computers, books, analog watches, acoustic instruments, film cameras…

  192. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 4:31 pm [Reply]

    @I speak Jive (#177):
    I got a lot for free as a child because my wonderful Mom worked at Fawcett Publications in Greenwich, CT (she’s retired from the publishing industry now), and was always bringing home free comics for me.
    I told her recently that she had also inadvertently given me a comic mag called “Goose” as well, I think the first edition, and that it had actually been a soft-core porn magazine, which it truly was. We both had a laugh about it – my parents never ever forbade me to read anything, ever. My Dad was a writer and was completely aganst the whole “Banned books” movement back in the 70′s.
    See, now I’m here after all these years! : D

  193. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 4:33 pm [Reply]

    Marvin and Honey Cookie Child would make a perfect couple – -she eats too much, he shits too much.

    And speaking of gross, Baldo Sept. 5 is quite icky, but I love that the kid getting the heaves looks like a very young Les Moore.
    Coincidence, or deliberate? Discuss (with feedback)

  194. TheDiva
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:01 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#193): A mentality which always seems to come with the attitude that the older individual is somehow superior because they once had a phone with a cord or a television they had to get up to change the channel on or whatever. (This is the cause of approximately 63% of the jokes in Pluggers.) I think it’s a reaction to feeling confused and alienated by new things; they can’t adapt so they tell themselves that it’s the younger generation that is missing out.

  195. EmarandZeb
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:08 pm [Reply]

    @aphthakid (#64):

    MOMMA: Is this strip sent to newspapers via a mid-80?s model fax machine?

    Yeah, that jumped out at me as well, today. Even though I’m pretty sure “Momma” looks like this EVERY day, so I don’t know why today’s grimy reproduction job should be so notable.

  196. EmarandZeb
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:09 pm [Reply]

    The horror of not closing tags. My kingdom for an edit button.

  197. Rocky Stoneaxe
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:15 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#194): In the early/mid-1960s, I used ride my bike to the convenience store to buy a three-pack of non-current (at least a year or two old) comics for a quarter. Mostly the packs consisted of 1 Marvel, 1 Charlton and 1 Archie comic book sealed in a clear plastic bag. And they were usually in Near Mint condition or better.

    The most valuable comic I ever found this way: Fantastic Four #1 from 1961!

  198. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:19 pm [Reply]

    @Mr. Yezpitelok (#175):

    Gee whiz on an electric fence!*

    I would probably continue to call surviving husbands “widows” if you hadn’t pointed it out. Widowers.

    Oh, and, yeah. That was “anonymous” was me.
    yesterday. what a fool I was back then.

    *for those too cool to read warning labels, of course.

  199. Flonatin of Bologna
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:25 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#107): How many consecutive days have you said that now?

  200. Rita Lake and the Special Goddesses
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:34 pm [Reply]

    “I’m thinking of future generations, Senator! Specifically, future generations of magnificent deer, free to roam across a serene landscape devoid of humans, and obviously NOT future generations of people that I might produce with my wife. Ick.”

    I will not be convinced that this Mark Trail storyline was written in this century until Senator Mason references “job creators.”

  201. UncleJeff
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:46 pm [Reply]

    @Master Softheart (#60): “the industrial press of justice.”
    Niiiiiiice.

  202. mary_worthless
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:46 pm [Reply]

    @Adam (#29): Freaking pervert. Josh, ban him, please.

  203. Morgan Wick
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:50 pm [Reply]

    The intended joke in today’s Family Circus – that Mommy has spent so long helping Dolly read that she’s now only able to speak in the repetitive, obvious-stating style of Dick and Jane books – is funny enough, Josh, especially by Family Circus standards. Why do you have to ruin it?

    Momma’s progeny may be incredibly shallow, but at least he has a humongous ego!

  204. Artist formerly known as Ben
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:06 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#185):

    Spiderman-”Two costumed fools approach!” And the wind begins to howl.

    Thanks. This go nowhere plot needed something to liven it up, and a Hendrix guitar solo will do nicely.
    (Yes, I know it’s a Bob Dylan song, but life isn’t always fair. [Standard TV Tropes warning.])

  205. The Ridger
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:08 pm [Reply]

    I never read 9CL until I stumbled upon this site. I have never read a storyline that makes me wish I’d started reading it earlier. (Nazi grandma; Edda is a butt double who becomes the IT Girl and gets fired; Edda thinks she’s pregnant because reasons; and now this Fleurrie the Vet debacle. They just get worse. )And I am not going to read any more of it.

  206. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:15 pm [Reply]

    @Adam (#29):
    I had the same interpretation before I saw the chosen comics of the day!

    RM – next teacher-Mrs. Wilkins. Booyah.

    JP – How many times have they brought food platters and tea trays to this woman?

    3G – So Cole is running a fever? Because otherwise, he sure ain’t hot.

    Beetle – I think Sarge unlocked the rear window a long time ago.

    CS – Here we go, back to the ballroom.

  207. walt d.
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:23 pm [Reply]

    @Mincemeat (#137): Definitely nothing would happen until the hormones kicked in, and I’m confidant that Dennis would either kill Margaret or secretly build himself a boat years before that happened. One of the animated strips features the two “lost” on an island beset by various difficulties. Margaret doesn’t get anywhere with Dennis. (The island is part of an amusement park, and the difficulties fake.)

  208. Illustrator Steve
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:23 pm [Reply]

    @Cloudbuster (#119):
    I agree, a caracter in the strip that’s daring, sassy and truthful … now If only Sassy could talk!

  209. Dr. Pill
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:25 pm [Reply]

    The Archie automated joke machine (sorry, memory fades on its name) screwed up and put the funniest line in the first panel.

    Way to improve the self-esteem of your players, Bull, by telling the world how bad they are.

    Slipping into “Marvin” territory, aren’t we Bleeker The Rechargeable Dog, with a joke about airline toilet water?

  210. Dr. Pill
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:34 pm [Reply]

    @Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket (#193): Agreed. And we’re supposed to laugh at the “dopey” girls. Actually, that collection is filled with stamps the old lady stripped off the letters of all her former suitors she’d rejected. Gloating or pining over lost loves? You decide.

  211. hogenmogen
    September 12th, 2013 at 6:50 pm [Reply]

    A3G: I’m with Marty on this one. Unless things have really gotten casual, when I was a teen, the only truly taboo topic was “Sexy Thoughts Involving Our Parents”.

  212. walt d.
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:14 pm [Reply]

    9CL: I feel that I’ve been remarkably easy going about this story ever since “Andy” and “Deputy Mean Streets” came to arrest Fleurrie. However, if today is any indication, we seem to be doing the same progression as the FW date-rape story. Several month build up on a “serious” story which suddenly deflates with no evidence given, but the “bad guy(s)” suitably humiliated. The only crime the Smucklers have been convicted of is not being cool.

    9CL: I believe you could make a decent strip with the minor characters (the farmers, the law, the waiter), having Fleurrie and perhaps Juliette as the local oddballs, and axing all the other major characters. (And the cat, scream a dozen outraged CC-ers..Okay, fine, we’ll keep the cat.) Of course there’d have to be a new writer.

    SF: Ted gets a peck on the cheek for his preparation, echoing the peck on the cheek Hil’s boy friend got for being unimaginably thoughtful. (I thought at the time, wow, it’s a good thing he packed the lunch, else he would have gotten a handshake.) Add in Grandma’s and Aunt Whoever’s abhorrent taste in men. and the female line in this family has some serious relationship issues.

  213. walt d.
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:24 pm [Reply]

    Hi and Lois: If Chip’s sidekick thinks he might have a chance with the H&L version of Veronica, he may as well be disillusioned now as later. As he considers his “second choice” he may as well also learn that no one, NO ONE, is accepting of the impression that they are someone’s second choice.

  214. Captain Canuck
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:33 pm [Reply]

    @Adam (#29): I’m still not sure what the “Moro Islamic Liberation Front” has to do with ferns…

  215. Liam
    September 12th, 2013 at 7:49 pm [Reply]

    @Flonatin of Bologna (#201):

    Everyday that I click onto the comic to see what people are reacting to.

  216. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:06 pm [Reply]

    @queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando (#130): Long, long day–but a bull puppy makes it better!

  217. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:18 pm [Reply]

    @walt d. (#214): To be fair, Brooke’s portrayal of the Smuckler brothers is restrained, by his standards. He did not show either of them picking his nose or ass, much less both at the same time! Subtlety!

    I disagree that he can’t draw, though.

    Also, the coloring in Mark Trail is very nice today, as it often is.

  218. GrafSpee
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:20 pm [Reply]

    @LUJBEM FEJF (#31): Maybe Mark’s left hand is related to the hand of Vampire Hunter D.

  219. Amateur
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:24 pm [Reply]

    S-M: “The two costumed fools approach!”

    Change that to singular and you have the perfect introduction every time Spidey makes an entrance.

  220. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:27 pm [Reply]

    Oh, Ziggy.

    I had no idea…

    What you looked like while wet.

    You have my condolences.

    Look on the bright side: You getting some long overdue recognition. That’s good, right?

  221. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:34 pm [Reply]

    @walt d. (#215):
    Besides, the blonde in the cap may have lesbian proclivities, so just be careful, big boy.

  222. Calico
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:36 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#208):
    Oh, I meant Ms. Nelson. Gaaaah.
    Now, back to those 60′s comics…

  223. seismic-2
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:38 pm [Reply]

    ASM: “Shoot me and get it over with!” How many times have we all said that, while reading Spider-Man?

  224. Ziggy
    September 12th, 2013 at 8:43 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#222): It looks like you’re all wet too.

  225. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:07 pm [Reply]

    @Kristian (#106):

    You mean the version of Barfy where the legend lived up to the name?

  226. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:10 pm [Reply]

    @Ziggy (#226):

    What’t that you were sayin’, Zigg?
    I was too busy ah…raisin’ da roof!

    Hey somebody you know is over here! Josh the Parrot!

    Go, Joshy! Go, Joshy! Go, Joshy, GO!

    He’s kickin’ it like a parrot on a peg-legged pirate, yo!

  227. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:15 pm [Reply]

    @mary_worthless (#204):

    ???

    Doesn’t the acronym just mean: Man, I love Flan!
    ???

    I don’t know if I’ve ever had it, mind you. However, it is almost like people have fetishes with their foods and their foodstuffs, and I suppose their stuffed foodstuffs, too. So, I just say, to each her or his own.

    If you love Flan, then man, go get as much Flan as possible. Just don’t come to me all bloated and gassy as I tease you for looking like the Rubber Band Flan Man.

    Messaged received, @Ziggy (#226): ??

    do do doot doot doot
    he’s he Rubber Band Flan Man
    do do doot doot doot do doot!

  228. walt d.
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:16 pm [Reply]

    @Gladly, the cross-eyed bear (#219): I’ve never criticized Brooke’s drawing, although I have criticized his op art backgrounds. I was careful to write that my proposed new and improved 9CL would require a new writer, not a new artist. Since Brooke is apparently able to get by with his 60 papers and his book collections, he obviously would never tolerate such interference. It’s a pity, since his “minor” characters are by and large potentially so much more interesting than his “major” ones.

    MT: I concede that the color is very nice today. (However, artists do not necessarily dictate the coloring of the weekday strips.) I also volunteer that, except for people, the drawing in MT is not actually that bad, and the wildlife drawing is good. I further volunteer that the story including the fire at the lake largely held my attention. So, I concede that MT is a fair distance from being the worst all around strip available. (That would be MW, of the ones I ever happen to see. Everyone has their own “favorites”.)

  229. Ziggy
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:25 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#228): As the drunken frog calls out your name to the forest denizens, a turtle frowns in disgust.

  230. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:25 pm [Reply]

    @walt d. (#230):

    So, I concede that MT is a fair distance from being the worst all around strip available.

    In other words, Mark Trail, you’re no Reply All.

    I enjoy MT ironically, but in some weird way, I enjoy it non-ironically, too. The innocence of it, the complete dedication to its own worldview—I find that unironically charming.

  231. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:27 pm [Reply]

    @Vince M (#184): THIS MUST HAPPEN.

  232. Mr O'Malley
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:28 pm [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#134): I would hope they might fix some of the things that haven’t worked properly since their last big change. But with them making pointless and irritating changes to Groups last week, and the logo fiasco, I’m not getting my hopes up.

  233. Holly Folly
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:30 pm [Reply]

    YES! A Mark Trail Sci-fi Channel original movie, Trail of the Domes. Starring Bear Grylls.

  234. Amos Snarkadder DBA Curmudgeon Farm
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:30 pm [Reply]

    MW Dinner and a nice chat over a glass of wine. Or two. A little more wine and pretty soon…

    Shannon is telling Mary all her secrets.

  235. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:32 pm [Reply]

  236. seismic-2
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:32 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#232): As Ash said of the eponymous character in Alien: “I admire its… purity.”

    And the Sunday strips are gorgeous. They bring a tear to the eyes of those of us old enough to remember how beautiful the newspaper comics often were, before they shrank to near invisibility.

  237. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:40 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder DBA Curmudgeon Farm (#236):

    Sheesh, Mare. I had fuhrgotten all about that HICK all about tha HICK.
    Thas a distant memory!

    Y’see, ol’ biddy, ol’ pal, I killed a man in Santa Fe…yuh wanna know why?

    I killed a man in Santa Fe jus’ cuz he cried.

    That look on yuh face, Mare. You know. YOU know.

    I’m stone cold. You stone cold.

    Where’sh the bodies at, Mare?
    Where’sh the bodies of aaaall the people you helped in yer mercy killings, Mare? I won’t tell nobody. I know you can’t win ‘em all wif yer meddlin’. So, you jush finish them off. K-POW! FRONK!
    G’head.
    Tell me.
    It’ll be jush between youandme.

  238. Amos Snarkadder
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:41 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#237): Thanks! If this story won’t ever end, I may as well play some.
    // Glad I got it in before Flickr gets all crazy. Again.

  239. Amos Snarkadder
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:42 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#239): Ha! Do you think Mary is capable of blackmail?

  240. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:43 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder DBA Curmudgeon Farm (#236):

    ha!

    I didn’t think it was a comic and didn’t bother to read it.
    Now I have read it and that’s funny. Completely new.

  241. tallyHO
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:45 pm [Reply]

    @Amos Snarkadder (#241):

    I’ve always maintain that we don’t know what she is not capable of.

    As far as we know, she made money off of betting on Judas. As far as we know she made money off of betting on Brutus. As far as we know, she dated ‘em both before placing money on their actions!

  242. Mincemeat
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:54 pm [Reply]

    @walt d. (#209): Hmmm. I guess I’d have put my money on Margaret in that situation; Dennis may be a menace, but she seems about one stressful day away from turning into the Zodiac Killer. Anyway, I decided to imagine our heroes as the girl scouts who were forced (by Bigfoot!) to stab each other to death in “Night of the Demon,” and I felt much better.

  243. Joe Blevins
    September 12th, 2013 at 9:58 pm [Reply]

    “I’d be more impressive if we had still rings.” Oh, sure right… wait, WHAT? How would that make you more impressive? I’d be impressed if you stopped doing pantomime gymnastics in the hallway where people are trying to walk.

  244. jim, some guy in iowa
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:01 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#232): @seismic-2 (#238):

    ‘s how I look at Mark Trail, too. In lots of ways it’s the clunkiest thing on the comics page, and yet there’s nothing else like it – where else could you find the most lovingly drawn and detailed panel of a wilderness scene *and* have dialogue balloons apparently coming from a squirrel’s abdomen?

  245. Rita Lake and the Special Goddesses
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:17 pm [Reply]

    Josh, sorry to bother you, but did something change on the site? All of a sudden the comments on posts before 9/3/13 seem to be missing.

  246. seismic-2
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:32 pm [Reply]

    MT: “I’d be more impressive if we had still rings.” Maybe you would be, but I do not want to see that special leap high in the air where you flaunt your genitalia piercing. Yes, not even if it does explain how you acquired the nickname “Tip”.

  247. Ratiocinator
    September 12th, 2013 at 10:46 pm [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#172): It’s cool that he’s able to have a sense of humour given what he’s going through. (Sorry I didn’t respond to this sooner.)

    @Lumaca Morente (#192): You’re not the first to get that impression, though thankfully nobody’s ever thought I was much older after looking at me! With luck, that day’ll never come.

    @Calico (#194): That’s cool, both as a story and of your parents. You also reminded me that even with the higher prices, we have Free Comic Book Day to compensate for it a little bit.

    @Dr. Pill (#211): Oh good, this is one of those exceptions to the previously mentioned “I only seem to remember bad stuff” rule! The name of the machine, without looking back, is the AJGLU–”Archie Joke Generating Laugh Unit”. I wasn’t sure about the number and had to look, but it turns out I had that right too; the full name is the AJGLU 3000.

    (And this is the biggest thing I have to take pride in today. How sad.)

    @seismic-2 (#225): Well, in my experience it’s been “Shoot him and get it over with!”

  248. J.R. Clark
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:26 pm [Reply]

    Watch out, Mark! The Senator is hiding the Jackelrod Ball behind his back!

  249. Huckleberry Fink
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:35 pm [Reply]

    Better Half: After critiquing his wife’s elbows, Stanley moves on to her sharp knees.

  250. Huckleberry Fink
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:55 pm [Reply]

    Gil: Obviously, Gil is watching “Safety Last!” with Harold Lloyd. At least he’s starting off with the best…

  251. Poteet
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:56 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug, Speaker to Spam (#61): Heyday factories. Huh. Sorry, I’m clueless.

  252. seismic-2
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:02 am [Reply]

    MG&G: NSFBG

    RMMD: Clearly, the next item of apparel to be offered to ‘Mudges will bear the logo of Happy Otter School.

  253. Poteet
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:04 am [Reply]

    MT — Is the wilderness area public land or private land? If it’s private land, why talk to Senator Thingschange about it? And if it’s public land, there are specific laws, regulations, and protocols that *mallet head bang* Sorry.

  254. Huckleberry Fink
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:05 am [Reply]

    Mother Goose: “Stop clowning around and bring me the Botox!” (NSFBG!)

  255. Poteet
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:10 am [Reply]

    MW — If we have to watch this smugfest for a week or three, it would be nice if we could at least see some interesting food. Or interesting scenery. Or interesting wildlife. Couldn’t we at least see a javelina that made the mistake of listening in and has keeled over from boredom?

  256. Michigan J. Frog
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:20 am [Reply]

    Piranha Club:

    ♫ A-tisket, a-tasket
    A brown and yellow basket ♫

  257. Huckleberry Fink
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:30 am [Reply]

    RwO: He was also a prisoner in a Chinese fortune cookie factory.

  258. Michigan J. Frog
    September 13th, 2013 at 12:40 am [Reply]

    Hazel:

    ♫ When you’re smiling
    ♫ When you’re smiling
    The whole world smiles with you ♫

  259. Droopy Says
    September 13th, 2013 at 1:17 am [Reply]

    Spider and Spiderer: Are those genuine adamantium chains? Accept no substitute, El Condor! And be glad that The Kingpin sent you his spares.

    Family Circus: Jeffy is wearing a new shirt? Shenanigans are hereby called. In 1962 Jeffy would have worn Billy’s hand-me-downs.

    You Don’t Know, Dick: Whatever the explanation for the Moon Maid’s resurrection, it isn’t justified by the endless delays and teases.

    Mark Trail: This look into politics is just riveting. Or it will be, once they install those Truman-era oil derricks in LoFo.

    Pluggers: When a Plugger makes a fashion statement, he points to his wardrobe and says “I got this stain eating at Blubber King, and this one is from when I painted the swing on our front porch, and–darn, my wife used her mom’s laundry secret to remove my beloved oil stain from fixing my car during that rain storm!”

    Phantom: I’m impressed by this strip’s power to make action so passive.

  260. Tom
    September 13th, 2013 at 1:17 am [Reply]

    ReFOOB: So… if Uncle Phil’s sucking on a plastic cigarette is like being willing to “try anything” after a period of “enforced celibacy”… perhaps Lawrence wasn’t the first gay character in “For Better Or For Worse”?

  261. Dale
    September 13th, 2013 at 2:29 am [Reply]

    MARK TRAIL

    When was the last time the “avid environmentalist” showed concern for the environment? This isn’t the usual story line.
    Also different – he punched a gun out of someone’s hands without incapacitating him.

    We still don’t know what type of senator Mason is. Most lucrative for him and useful for the oil companies is U.S., retired. He collects a pension and has free health care. He keeps his title. He is on the board of some oil companies and is a lobbyist for others

  262. Kilby
    September 13th, 2013 at 3:59 am [Reply]

    I think it’s a little strange that nobody has mentioned the typo in the Josh’s last paragraph: “asymmetrical hair would ever describe…” – the word “ever” should have been “never”.

  263. Kristian
    September 13th, 2013 at 4:06 am [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#227): I think it was mostly off-panel, but at least he was a realistic character and not this adolescent, brooding, emo shell. (Take that, post-Silver Age comics!)

  264. Kristian
    September 13th, 2013 at 4:19 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#232): Oh, gods, Reply All. As the person from the syndicate allegedly said, you’re just complaining about Reply All because you’re a man … and … oh.

  265. gleeb
    September 13th, 2013 at 5:22 am [Reply]

    Dennis-Skateboarding is not a crime. Dennis is not menacing today.

    ‘bean-An almost seamless transition from football tram crap to marching band crap.

    Sophie’s Charts-Still reading maps.

    Spidey-Uh, Condor? Aren’t they both spider-powered? I ask in English so i don’t have to take the trouble of typing initial question marks.

    Dick-A dark stormy night. Perfect atmosphere for killing Dr Ghote and once again not telling anyone what the deal is with Moon Maid.

  266. Ben Wasabi
    September 13th, 2013 at 6:10 am [Reply]

    @Kilby (#264): Josh needs to brush up on his Edgar Allan Poe.

    Quoth the raven, ‘Nevermore.’

  267. Droopy Says
    September 13th, 2013 at 6:14 am [Reply]

    @gleeb (#267): Please don’t have called it about Dr. Ghote’s death. “There was a clever and rational explanation for this Moon-Maid reincarnation jive, but Dr. Ghote took the secret to his grave, so you’ll just have to trust us that his makes sense!”

  268. Kristian
    September 13th, 2013 at 7:07 am [Reply]

    And not a single MT/MW/’fist’/’milf’ joke? Just me?
    I need to cut down on … well, I need cut down on something!

  269. queek, source of Cuteness, Kawaii Commando
    September 13th, 2013 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    NAoQV: we are amused.

    GF: bit of a reach, but still witty dialog

    MG&G: NSFBG.

    RMMD: otters!

    had more funny, but one hand was taken up by petting the dog. (no, that’s not a euphemism, Hans was being needy.)

  270. Nick
    September 13th, 2013 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    Did they plagiarize the dialogue of this Apartment 3G from the opening scene of a 1980′s pornographic VHS?

  271. Sterling
    September 14th, 2013 at 1:12 am [Reply]

    I’m terribly disappointed Mark Trail doesn’t continue with the conversation between the deer and the house. I mean, that deer is a Senator; surely he has something interesting to say.

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