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Wednesday triumph, Wednesday HORROR

Mark Trail, 1/15/14

All appears to be well that has ended well in Mark Trail! Mark’s good name has been cleared, Jared has gone back to the big house without so much as a punching, and, most importantly, endless piles of flapjacks and maple syrup await heroes and victims alike. A victory without flapjacks tastes like defeat, whereas a steaming pile of starchy flapjack goodness makes victory all the sweeter, both metaphorically and literally (because of the high sugar content in the maple syrup). “Good lord,” says Cherry, days from now, “After endless rounds of binging and purging, I think it’s finally become physically impossible for me to eat any more flapjacks.” “No,” says Mark. “We have to keep eating them. We neet to eat these flapjacks … forever.

Momma, 1/15/14

It’s good, Momma! It’s very good that your son places you in a conceptual category so different from the one in which he places the women he has sex with that he’s unable to formulate a meaningful comparison between you and them. Now please, for the love of all that’s right, go to sleep and stop thinking about this, I beg you.

221 responses to “Wednesday triumph, Wednesday HORROR”

  1. Casey, Crime Photographer
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:21 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#y301): Judge Privileged: Isn’t Lara Bell’s father at the wedding site?

    Lara Bell is the photojournalist over in the Phantom strip. April Bower is the bride-to-be in Judge Parker.

    Maybe Lara was originally hired to be the photographer at April and Randy’s wedding. Before she blew the Parkers off to chase a story in Africa…

  2. Casey, Crime Photographer
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    Agnes: It’s the same camera that was used to make the kinescope of Vitamin Flintheart’s debut on
    “Captain Video.”

    Also, kudos to Agnes for keeping the severed head of Cathy Guisewite’s “Cathy” on top of her dresser…

  3. Dennis Jimenez
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:28 am [Reply]

    MT – The American Antiquities Act just called – they said to loot all the burial mounds you want – just please send no more flap acks and homemade maple syrup….

    Momma – Um – dink more MILF….

    Adios Amigos, DJ.

  4. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:30 am [Reply]

    @Casey, Crime Photographer (#1): Re: JP – To keep the names straight, just remember this handy phrase: “April Bower means tits and a glower”.

  5. pugfuggly
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:37 am [Reply]

    MT It seems like all’s well, until a certain bear shows up with his ursine buddies, bent on revenge over being denied his flapjack syrup…

    Momma “Only as a unit of weight, Momma. For example, I won’t consider dating anyone over 4.5 M-Units.”

  6. Mibbitmaker
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    RMMD: “What, and get wished into the cornfield if I don’t? Of course I’ll be there! Whadaya think I am, stupid?”

    MT: Oh, this is going to be a product tie-in, isn’t it?

    JP: “I’m not allowed to think that’s plausible.”

    Curtis: “No, mom, don’t! That would make things interesting, and we can’t DO that! Why d’ya think we skipped Kwanzaa?!”

    FW: Army surplus joke!

    Popeye: This is the same woman who is constantly falling for Bluto/Brutus the bully, don’t forget.

  7. Chyron HR
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    Crank S – “And then all the children on the bus started chanting, ‘DEAD BABY, DEAD BABY, DEAD BABY!’ Did you know little kids are kind of assholes?”

  8. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    @Casey, Crime Photographer (#1): Thanks. It’s getting harder for me to keep the idiots straight in assorted comics, especial when there are two blondes acting foolish in the jungle. In fact I think my mind is going. In my nightmares, Billy Keane shows up in RMMD with a box of extra-fattening chocolates for Little Sawah, and asks her to take over the artwork from Jeffy. She accepts, and turns Grandma Keane into Mary Worth, which explains why Grandpa Keane left for heaven in such haste. Then Billy discovers his new bus driver is Ed Crankshaft, who has just picked up the kids from reFOOB. I’m sure Les Moore is in there, but this is the point where I wake up in a cold sweat. Pancakes, anyone?

  9. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    9CL – This is why critics of “Saving Private Ryan” have always questioned the film’s historical accuracy. Most military historians agree that the invasion would have been a colossal failure if the defending Germans had been armed and had not had such qualms about killing Americans. Finding a dead American soldier near the invasion site would be shocking, and sure to arouse suspicion.

    Y’know, Brooke could have increased the plausibility of this whole unnecessary flashback if, rather than setting it on the landing site on D-Day, he had just made Bill an allied spy in occupied France. It would explain why this Wehrmach soldier is unarmed and casually visiting his girlfriend, and why Bill is alone and unequipped.

  10. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:43 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#9): Bill is fortunate to be unequipped. Otherwise he might have to endure sex with what may well be a Burber woman.

  11. Liam
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:44 am [Reply]

    A3G-”Do you also have your own water with you? You know all that water outside of New York is terrible.”

    FC-Oh that’s so cute. Dolly thinks she’s in charge. Dolly, this is not ‘Rex Morgan’ and you are not Sarah.

    MT-Freeze scene and run the credits.

    MT-”Hey, everyone! We’re all going to eat flapjacks!”

  12. Myrtle
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:48 am [Reply]

    MT: What? Jared’s back in jail? I thought he started out as a sympathetic character, wanting to go straight until he became a patsy for Evil Jeff. I guess there’s no redemption in the unforgiving Lost Forest.

  13. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    9CL: I think I’ve figured out why Brooke is so fond of the Third Reich. He thinks the Grammar Nazis were a branch of the SS.

    Mark Trail: When The Authorities go to arrest Jeff Baldy, they will find nothing in the cabin but loose ropes and bear tracks. Jeff will be one more bafling LoFo disappearance. Meanwhile, a wildlife scientist arrives to investigate the oddly high cholesterol levels among the rare brownblack bears.

    FW: Owen the Idiot’s words are out of character for him, but not for Batiuk. Poor Tom, it’s been weeks since his last wall of text, and the pressure has mounted steadily to do it again. He’s like a serial killer who can’t fight the voices, and has to lash out at the handiest victim. Today it was Asshat who fell victim to the overinflated word balloon.

  14. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:56 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#10): Bill is fortunate to be unequipped. Otherwise he might have to endure sex with what may well be a Burber woman.

    But he has already had sex with a Burber woman. How do you think he came to be unequipped in the first place?

  15. pugfuggly
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:01 am [Reply]

    A3G “Hi Tommie, great work on the set today! Listen, we just got the latest numbers in, and, well, there’s no easy way to say this, but they’re not looking good for you. We thought that audiences might like you better after an absence, and a wedding is always ratings gold, but so far we just aren’t seeing it from the focus group. Long story short, I met with the writers yesterday, and we’re sending your character on another prolonged vacation…no, no, this time it’ll be Pittsburgh….”

    FW Wow, I thought that last week’s ‘Crankshaft counts the ways of Plant Extermination” was bad, but a whole week riffing on bad cafeteria food? Isn’t there someone dying, or reliving a painful memory or something?

    Lockhorns Ok, this is more of a slightly related story:Last summer in the small town where my mom grew up, a donut store opened (the first one the town had ever seen!). As a way to attract people they advertised ‘Free Wifi’. The first week they had 3 customers asking for a free ‘Whiffee’ to go with their coffee.

    MW Just to make it clear: getting robbed/raped/killed in central park is ok, but almost getting hit by a taxi (that clearly had the right of way) is grounds to leave the city immediately?

    SM The fact that Spidey is able to say all that as he flies through the garage tells me that that robot is flying extremely slowly. Like, slower than a walking pace. kinda takes the sense of danger out of it, doesn’t it?

  16. Kevin on Earth
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    MT: no tight lipped kiss for Mr Dunlap?

    ASM: Has it been 20 years since I last saw/heard a character say “Gangway!” Already? I thought I would appreciate it more…I guess I have 20 years to prepare for the next time…

    ASM2: Who yells “Gangway” anyway? It’s like those vague WWII references in Bugs Bunny when I was growing up.

    A3G: “There’s so much gloating and lording my engagement over you left to do, of course I’ll be back soon!”

  17. Northernlurker
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    RMMD: Sarah has a meeting with the board? She’s five. Sarah does not have a meeting with the board. Sarah does not have a lawyer. Five-year-olds do not have meetings and do not have lawyers. Her parents might have a lawyer. Her parents have a meeting with the board. This is ridiculous.
    RMMD: On the other hand I find June’s eyes strangely sexy.

  18. MissMikey
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    9CL: Oh dear, if this is an example of the dialogue we’ll be treated to for the rest of this storyline, I think I might prefer a painful re-telling of It Happened One Night two panels at a time.

  19. Horace Broon
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    A3G, yesterday: “Wow Tommie, are you sure that woman is really your mother? No, seriously. I grew up thinking Roberta was my mother, LuAnn recently learnt her real mom is Aunt Ruby. I’m just saying, have you ever asked to see your birth certificate?”

    MW: “But I’d rather live without New York taxi drivers. Are you even paying attention?”

    Phantom: Um, while the Bandar certainly have plenty evidence suporting the “Man bad” part of the theory, I’m not sure where they’re getting “Lady good” from. This is the same lady who has been ignoring cultural taboos all over Bangalla in the pursuit of splashing this reclusive tribe — and now their even more secretive guardian — all over the front pages. But she must be good because why would a bad person poison another bad person? Even Mark Trail is capable of more nuanced moral reasoning than that!

    Pluggers: Although the question is unlikely to trouble you while reading this strip.

  20. Anonymous
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#9): Yes, it’s hard to understand what Bert the Nazi Officer thinks he’s doing absent from his post only miles from a crucial major military operation. His own side will presumably shoot him for desertion. This story might make sense if Bert the Nazi realizes he’s in trouble with his own people, and the plan is for Bert the Nazi to kill Bill, assume his identity and marry Edna. That might explain how Bill went from hero (from Edna’s POV) to cold unfeeling asshole once he showed up in America, why Bill is buried in Normandy despite supposedly having come home later, and also reveal that the Berber’s are descended from a line of pure blooded Aryan Nazis, which we alll suspected was the case.

    But, you say, wouldn’t Edna recognize immediately that Bert has a German accent? Hah! This is 9CL where everyone, regardless of race, creed, or national origin talks in the same register of artificial faux literary English. Objection overrruled.

  21. TheDiva
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    Momma: What does she want him to say? “Yes, Momma, it’s my dream to marry a squat gnome who micromanages my life”?

    MT: Well, it was very nice of the plot threads to tie themselves up while Mark was busy. Everyone’s a winner!

  22. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#13): MT: Of course they won’t find Jeff in the cabin, he’s standing in panel 1, already pre-handcuffed with the standard boiler-plate arrest warrant for attempted artifact smuggling filled out for extra police convenience.

  23. Elk Meadow
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:19 am [Reply]


    “This is Sarah’s college fund we’re talking about.”

    Ha. Sarah already has so much in her college fund, she could pay full room and board and tuition and fees at Oxford, England, and still have plenty left over to fly first class home every week-end to do her laundry buy a new set of clothes.

  24. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#10): If Bill O’Malley is unequipped, where the hell did Uncle Jolly Gay Roger come from?

  25. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:23 am [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#19): Phantom: The “lady good” comes from three things. She has
    A press pass
    Punchy sass
    Nice ass

  26. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:25 am [Reply]

    Crank: Dead kids. And this is Batuik’s “lighthearted” strip.

    FW: Say what you want about George Bush Sr., but he never said that about Operation Dessert Storm.

  27. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:26 am [Reply]

    9CL – You have to grudgingly give Brooke credit. It takes … well, not skill, but something … to make a French woman anticipating the liberation of France sound arrogant and entitled, aka Burberesque.

    @Anonymous (#20): My gosh, that is the only way these developments make any sense at all. Of course, that means that it is unlikely that this is what will happen.

    And the fact that having a complete stranger, speaking a completely different language, assume Bill’s identity and conceal that fact from Bill’s lover and Bert’s future wife and mother of his children, for the rest of his life, until someone runs across a solitary tombstone in Normandy 70 years later is more plausible than anything else is … well … typical.

  28. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    RMMD – So Sawah’s Horsie Drawings are going to pay for her college education. I guess that is the hook that is supposed to make us root for her lawyer to really stick it to the Art Museum. Why should her highly-compensated parents have to pay, when the museum donors can be made to do so by tricking them into thinking their donation go to the museum?

    (And if Sawah is such a pwodigy, and given the strip’s tropes, won’t colleges be bidding against each other to pay her to bring them the prestige that her enrollment would bestow?)

  29. cheech wizard
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:32 am [Reply]

    JP – The hat lady isn’t the only woman who’s mysteriously disappeared around this crew. Who might be morally debauched enough to be a suspect in both?

    Gee, ya think?

  30. anon
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:35 am [Reply]

    9CL: Oh, so she is Julie Andrews. “The hills are alive with the Sound of War Crimes…”

    Archie: Archie and Jughead must be related, because this looks like a party for inbreeders only.

    Beetle: Beetle never looked so flaccid…and flaccid apparently.

    Better Half: It’s funny because its neuropathy!

    Blondie: “You know Elmo is back at your home plowing Blondie, right Dagwood?”

    Crank: Place your bets on who the impatient driver was. I call Wally Winkerbean.

    Das Family: “Dolly Hillary Rodham Clinton Keane, that is not what I said and you know it!”

    Funk: Apparently, that is the War on Education.

    Hagar: Apparently, Hagar is now a guest of Ramsay Snow.

    Luann: Remember the tooth fairy, Gunther? Well, in order to receive a reward, you had to leave a tooth under your pillow…so if you want a new face from the face fairy…

    Now, the funny thing to have happen would have been for Quill and Gunther to exchange bodies overnight. Think of the hilarious hijinks as “Quill” makes his moves on Rosa only to be caught by Luann in flagrante delicto…and “Gunther”…well, there’s nothing funny about Gunther anymore unless he tries to come on to Luann and she clocks him with one meaty man hand hook.

  31. Gabacho
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:35 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth – Say what you want about New York City, at least every time your physical safety and even your life is pointlessly threatened, there’s a nearby deli to provide a nice pastrami on rye. In the wasteland of Santa Royale, your only option for overcoming existential panic is the Bum Boat and it closes ridiculously early.

  32. anon
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:39 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#15): re FW: Crankshaft may yet top itself if this is a false buildup to a near miss on a kid in Mary’s story or if a child was actually struck by a car and we have yet another misery story to add to the Batiuk pile of A Series of Unfortunate Deaths and Dismemberments.

  33. Arabella
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:39 am [Reply]

    Flapjack time in Mark Trail. Almost pool party time in Mary Worth. I think I will sleep in tomorrow.

  34. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    JP: The NSA kept metadata on billions of domestic phone calls, tapped into the phones of several leaders of friendly nations – but now becoming wedding crashers? They’ve clearly crossed a line.

    I am having a difficult time processing that professional spies would be so easily discovered, both on the boat and driving on the happy couple’s rear bumper at high speeds through a small town. This ham-handed, Keystone-cop stuff doesn’t speak well for April’s employer, and thus her own abilities.

    Also, wasn’t April CIA, not NSA? Regardless, she callously threw one of her own overboard.

  35. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:40 am [Reply]

    @Der Schnärkïnätör mit Ümläütën! (#y278): So you’re saying you’re not crazy, then?

    (Actually, my friend from Nebraska invented the game.)

  36. TheDiva
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:42 am [Reply]

    9CL: Is this Brooke’s version of a “cheese eating surrender monkeys” joke? In any case it looks like the dialogue was run through an online translator a few times.

    C’shaft: Crankshaft is stunned by someone displaying empathy for a child.

    FW: “The war to end all wars”? Come on, I’m nearly twice this kid’s age and even I would have said “the Clinton administration”–Nixon if I was feeling particularly crotchety.

    GT: So here’s a puzzler: who has the most embarrassing name, Keegan Hersey or Wendy Wiley?

    Luann: Rosa isn’t bored with you because you’re not well-traveled, Gunther. She’s bored with you because you’re boring.

    MW: “Sorry, Ken, but I’m going back to California where there’s absolutely no chance of being involved in a car-pedestrian accident!”

    Pluggers write their tired sentiments the old fashioned way, dammit!

    SM: For maximum effect, imagine Spidey’s line being said by Don Adams.

  37. Walker of Dog
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    MW: New Yorkers are having second thoughts about that new Mayor de Blasio. Back when Bloomberg wanted you dead, you were dead.

    A3G: The fiancé said Manchester, Tommie heard Pittsburgh.

    FC: Dolly’s dogsled is going to be so imbalanced.

    JP: April: “My colleagues? You mean the NSA?”
    Randy: “No, I mean your boobs.”

    Plug: Plugger is to “Ha! Ha!” as Simpsons fan is to “Haw haw!”

    RMMD: Sarah’s saving up to buy a college?

  38. Dartpaw86
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    Spoiler: Francis is dating Betty White.

  39. cheech wizard
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    MW – No Mary, don’t leave New York! It’s the city that never sleeps! You can meddle all night if you wish! Where else can you show a bum the error of his ways at midnight? Or help a hooker realize her own self-loathing at 3 a.m.? Or enable a drunken party girl coming down off ecstasy to recognize the shallowness of her life as dawn breaks over the Atlantic? Or tell all of them what they really need to do is get married and settle down? Mary, New York is an open oyster just waiting for you to seize its pearls.

  40. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    BB: In where?

    MT: The southern part of the state is littered with the corpses of men whom Mark Trail has tied up and then forgotten about.

    Curtis: Diane, where’s the part where you tell your son that a girl has the right to make her own choices and when she says she doesn’t want to see you or be your girlfriend (in other words, when she says NO), you have to respect that, instead of endlessly harassing her?

  41. Beetle Bumstead
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#3): Just what we need…someone calling a Rule 34 thread on Momma.

  42. cheech wizard
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    9CL “You’re the Nazi. You kill him.”

  43. Master Softheart
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:51 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#15): Send that in to Pluggers!

    9Cl: Things really didn’t go well for a lot of French women who associated with the occupiers; it may be too late to deflect the angry crowds intent on branding, raping, or at least shaving her head even if she does keep a pet American until the Nazis retreat.

    Heathcliff: I think that a reboot of Fred Basset with Fred re-imagined as a British canine Heathcliff would be too awesome for the comics page.

    JP: Randy, I will take second place to no one in my concern for civil liberties and the degree to which I am horrified by the security-industrial apparatus that has grown up in the U.S. over the last decade, but even I think that’s dumb. Why would April’s shadowy government employer be tracking her to get at her father? I doubt she would have passed their security check to become a Super-spy and conduct her own foreign relations with Saudi princes if her father were on some CIA assassination list. Or are you worried that Snowden leaked secret NSA files to foreign spies who are now using them to crash your wedding?

    Whatever. If you’re worried, Randy, just ask Sophie to hack the NSA and figure out what’s going on.

    GT: So, are we supposed to be emotionally invested in which douchey basketball fan will get to first base with Hello-Kitty girl, or excited about the Milford girl’s team having actually won a game and demonstrated once again that Mimi is a more competent coach than Gil? I’m making an honest effort, here.

  44. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:52 am [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#22): Thanks for pointing out Jeff’s presence. I was so dazzled by Dunlop’s statements that I missed him.

  45. Lawyerbob
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:52 am [Reply]

    MT: Thanks to Elrod’s trademark ambiguous speech-balloon placement, it’s possible to imagine Andy the dog jumping on Mark and demanding flapjacks. If I were a dog, that would be my reaction: “For chrissakes, enough about artifacts! I want flapjacks!”

  46. Liam
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:53 am [Reply]

    JP-Why shouldn’t the NSA monitor your calls they monitor everyone else’s calls.

    MW-”But after nearly getting hit by one taxi I’ve decided that New York is not the city for me.”

    RMMD-How big is this board and do they want it to break upon landing it’s first blow on Sara?

    Sally Forth-Be careful, Hilary. I hear that insanity runs in families.

    Luann-Usually there is a large amount of glowing energy and you’ll get a new face and body.

    Luann-”I should be looking like David Tennant.”

  47. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:54 am [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#36): FW: “The war to end all wars”? Come on, I’m nearly twice this kid’s age and even I would have said “the Clinton administration”–Nixon if I was feeling particularly crotchety.

    Or, why not go all out and have the food be remaindered from the Second Punic or Peloponnesian wars?

    I suppose it is possible that Owen The Idiot is referring to one of those conflicts. We have had almost as many Wars to End all Wars as we have had Wars.

  48. cheech wizard
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:56 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#13): re: 9CL – Bravo, good sir. That one merits a ride on the float, if not the head of the parade.

  49. Pozzo
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:59 am [Reply]

    Don’t worry, Momma — a big ol’ stack of flapjacks will put you right to sleep!

  50. Odie Odo
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:00 am [Reply]

    @Huckleberry Fink (#y286): Gasoline Alley: Walt also gave Frank Buck the idea for “Two Buck Chuck.”

    Hold on, I think we may have found the secret to Walt’s longevity: cheap wine.

    And who’s the other “Buck” in “Two Buck”? Buck Jones? Buck Henry? Buck Rogers? Buckaroo Banzai?

  51. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:02 am [Reply]

    MT – That’s right, Mark, just invite yourself along your entourage into mister Dunlap’s home for a free flapjack breakfast. Come on, Mr. Dunlap, get with it, man! Ain’t ya got them flapjacks cookin’ on the wood stove yet?!

  52. blah
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    “I called the police, and they already have Jared in jail! Plus, they arrested the guy standing right behind me, but that’s a whole other story.”

  53. Nehemiah Scudder
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:07 am [Reply]

    Pluggers: Ha ha! (LOL)

  54. Nehemiah Scudder
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:08 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#53): (I typed that by hand.)

  55. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:10 am [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#50): …who’s the other “Buck” in “Two Buck”?

    Bucket J. Rockit, Brewster Rockit’s father and owner of a vineyard on the Planet of the Grape Men.

  56. Alfred E. Neuman
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:15 am [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#19) said Re: Phantom— “I’m not sure where they’re getting “Lady good” from.”

    It’s likely from a gastronomical perspective.

  57. Nehemiah Scudder
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#15): SM The fact that Spidey is able to say all that as he flies through the garage tells me that that robot is flying extremely slowly.

    Must be using the same technology as the RSM (Really Slow Missile) that Mr. Big Fatso (Work faster!) used against Spider-Man and Daredevil.

  58. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:20 am [Reply]

    MW: Aaagghh! No, Mary, don’t leave NYC! I wanted a plotline of “Mary Meddles Wall St.”! How can you leave that unexplored??

    Opening quote: Mary Pettibone Poole “People who think money can do anything may have done anything for money.” It’s not an exact quote, but Mary Worth writers are exempted from accuracy.

    Mary meets a guy in a $2000 suit who doesn’t throw his extra change at a street guitarist. A week of meddling ensues. The Wall St. guy has pressure at work to make more money! This goes on for 2 weeks. Mary meddles him another week. At work, he tries to call in favors from friends so he can make quota, but they don’t come through. He has visions of his happy childhood, dreaming of being lead clarinet in an orchestra.

    Margaret Walker:
    “Friends and good manners will carry you where money won’t go.”
    Wall St. dude passes a clarinetist on the street. Tears to the eyes. He throws some change in to the pot. He quits work. He tells Mary. She is so excited for him, but then she recommends his job to an unemployed side-meddle she’s been working. It’s a win-win-win-win!!! Another touchdown for Mary Worth!

  59. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:23 am [Reply]

    MT – And so we leave this peacefull setting called the Dunlap cabin where Doc and Mr. Dunlap have committed themselves to living happily together, Mark and Cherry continue to live happily apart from one another, Andy dog lives happily for traces of spilled maple syrup and table scraps. And then there’s Rusty trail, happily visiting some “friends” who have since kidnapped and left him bound and gagged inside an abandoned van somewhere in the southern part of the state not too far from a nearby area! THE END (fade to dark canoe green)

  60. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:25 am [Reply]

    RMMD (a.k.a. The Adventures of Sarah’s Book Deal): ……Riiiiiiiiight……As if Sarah’s entire college funding depends on making a 10 AM board meeting of a non-profit organization that just happens to have tons of cash laying around to randomly give high-paying contracts to a 5-year old girl to produce a whole bunch of books. Sure.

  61. Buzzards Circling Overhead
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#40): MT: The southern part of the state is littered with the corpses of men whom Mark Trail has tied up and then forgotten about.

    Yeah, that’s one of the things we love about the place.

  62. Tom, the Sailor Man
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:26 am [Reply]

    Luann – Quill’s next line is “‘N’ why’s my az hrt?”

  63. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:28 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#44): Dunlap’s comments look funny to me, too.

    “Yes, Mark, I’ve known you for years and years, but it took Cherry’s convincing to make me think that you weren’t a petty thief. She’s really quite a looker, that wife of yours. Is today an anniversary or birthday or does she wear Frederick’s of Hollywood every day? Anyway, I knew after just two or three minutes that you couldn’t have stolen the artifacts.

  64. Bill the Butcher
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:33 am [Reply]

    Hey, Droopy! Thanks for the link yesterday and wishes. I’m fine, just exhausted from work. Doing root canals all day takes one hell of a lot of energy out of you. I was planning to do Part Two of Waltz With Bashar tonight but I’m…just…too…tired.

    So, yeah, I wanted to tell you about this piece of terrible news which came to my notice. Look out, people!

  65. Liam
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    Archie-That should be, “Master Jughead Jones and his Submissive Archie Andrews.”

  66. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:35 am [Reply]

    MT – “After I talked to Cherry I knew you hadn’t taken the artifacts, Mark!”

    “Of COURSE I didn’t TAKE the artifacts, Mr. Dunlap … I BOUGHT them fair and square from Jeff for fifty bucks cash! If you would like to buy them from me I will gladly sell them to you the whole works for only twenty grand plus I’ll even throw in these two nifty pack baskets! Whaddiya say, Mr Dunlap?”

    “But all I can afford to give you would be an all you can eat flapjack breakfast!”

    “Throw in some home made maple syrup and you’ve got yourself a deal!”

  67. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:36 am [Reply]

    SM: I have no idea what Spidey’s endgame is here.

    “Quick, build another Manbot, but a good one, so it can help me!”

    “This is an auto repair place. We fix cars.”

    “Throw together a jamming device to scramble the incoming signals that Manbot is receiving!”

    “We fix cars.”

    “Use a giant magnet to pull Manbot away from me!”

    “We fix cars.”

    “Turn that TV to NBC, Manbot will get so hooked on Wheel of Fortune that he’ll forget about attacking me!”

    “That I can do, Spidey.”

    Manbot: Big money! Big money!

  68. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:36 am [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#63): What I find odd about Dunlap’s words is that when he spoke with Cherry, he clearly thought Mark had stolen the artifacts, abducted Jeff and abandoned Andy. But it’s nice to see that Doc’s injured ankle has healed overnight and he’s on his feet again.

  69. gnome de blog
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:40 am [Reply]

    What’s the problem out at the skull cave? Guran can just whip up a batch of Bandar medicine like he did the last time some blonde lady invaded the Deep Woods.

  70. cheech wizard
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:41 am [Reply]

    MT – So Mr. Dunlap gets his Indian mound artifacts back after a couple of rough men break into his house and almost murdered one of his guests. He’s practically broke. He lives in a shack in the woods. He has no spouse, his wife having either died or having been abandoned by any woman he ever cared for. His tasty jar of homemade syrup was dropped. Gee, it’s almost like he was cursed or something.

  71. Marc
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:41 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail- I know probable cause and evidence are not requirements for being arrested and indefinitely imprisoned in the Southern part of the state, but I’d love to know what grounds they put Jared away on. Assuming he wasn’t too stupid to confess unprovoked.

  72. Fashion Police
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:42 am [Reply]

    We are not sure what to think about young Judge Parker’s Justin Bieber sunglasses, except that they seem oddly appropriate.

  73. Perky Bird
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:43 am [Reply]

    “Say, Mark, did you know the Native Americans ate flapjacks as part of their most important ceremonies? In fact, the word ‘flapjack’ comes from the Cherokee word ‘fla’a-pah-joo’k,” which means, ‘sacred dough eaten on special occasions with juice from the trees.’ If you look in that packbasket, you’ll even find my prized Native American ceremonial flapjack flipper, hand crafted by the virginal Flapjack Priestess from deer antlers and turtle shells.”

  74. Marc
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:46 am [Reply]

    Mr Dunlop- “Sheriff, I suspect this fellow Jared here has stolen my artifacts, I’d like you to arrest him.
    Sheriff- “Those are pretty serious allegations, is this true Jared?”
    Jared- “NO! That fellow Mark Trail took them. Then he tied me up and kidnapped my friend!”
    Sheriff- “Hmmm…… Well Jared, put your hands behind your back, off to jail with you anyway. Does anyone know where these artifacts are now?”
    Doc- NO! They’re probably outside!”

  75. Joe Blevins
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:47 am [Reply]

    MT: “Now let’s have some flapjacks and some of that homemade maple syrup.” Incidentally, Mark says the same exact thing immediately after his annual “husbandly servicing” of Cherry. He tries to make the whole event less awkward for both of them by constantly reciting factoids about the Fallopian tubes during the event itself.

    MOMMA: You know what would be great about being one of Momma’s children? No, really, there would be one good thing. You always know what to get her for holidays and special occasions — tiny chairs.

  76. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:48 am [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#64): Glad to hear you’re okay. Meanwhile one our spy agencies, the venerable EIEIO, has already prepared to zombify all of North Korea. After our double agent Lee Khan Yu disables Pyongyang’s TV transmitters, we’re going to broadcast reruns of My Mother The Car into all three of their TV sets. They’re doomed!

  77. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    A3G: I love this synergy of Tommie’s blandness with Margo’s general disinterest in things outside NYC. A perfect storm of boring.

    “Oh, Pittsburgh. I didn’t know this Other-Than-Manhattan place actually had a name. No, I’m not going to ask WHY you’re going. Remember when I said that I couldn’t sleep? Your mere presence around me is making my eyelids drop like my last boyfriend’s pants to his ankles. Just lavish praise on my coffee and get the hell out of here already.”

  78. Bill the Butcher
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:53 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#76): It sounds like a war crime. Well, crime away. Let Kim feed himself to 120 hungry dogs:| See you tomorrow, I’m beat. Good night, all.

  79. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:58 am [Reply]

    MT – The beginning of a new story arc will begin tomorrow for Mark Trail whyile the Trails are seated at their breakfast table. What items will be certain to appear in tomorrow’s opening scene?
    1. Dainty tea cups with saucers?
    2. Coffee pouring scene?
    3. Andy drooling over surface of breakfast table?
    4. Doc announcing that Rusty is probably outside?
    5. Ranger Tom Martin drops by to chit chat?
    6. There will be an urgent phone call for Mark from Bill Ellis?
    7. Every convicted villainous criminal ever punched out by Mark Trail have been released from the LoFo southern part of the state prison and are in a nearby area surrounding the Trail cabin?
    8. Rusty Trail’s “friends” have taken over the Trail homestead, stolen Mark’s favorite big camera lens, tore down the cabin, bought an old school bus and have started a nudist hippie commune?
    9. To avoid being punished, Rusty Trail gets himself kidnapped?
    10. Rod Bassey takes Rusty fishing?
    11. All of the above?

  80. Anonymous
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:05 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#79):
    12. Rusty Trail will dream of dinosaurs.

  81. Voshkod
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:06 am [Reply]

    If you want a picture of Mark Trail’s future, imagine a flapjack being devoured by a human face—forever.

  82. Brad
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:07 am [Reply]

    I have to admit I’m intrigued by the concept of Mark Trail and crew actually eating flapjacks forever. Just the same 3 panels of the gang eating flapjacks repeated every day. It would be years before anyone outside this blog noticed, and would still feature less recycled art than BC.

  83. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:08 am [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#80):
    12a. The LoFo mob called to let Mark & Cherry know that Rusty Trail sleeps with the dinosaursises!

  84. Mike N.
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:16 am [Reply]

    FW: When I was in high school, Domino’s had a contract to come into our school and sell pizza. I’m glad to see that Montoni’s has a similar contract with Westview High.

  85. GeoGreg
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:18 am [Reply]

    Heathcliff: “Hot-dog broth”???? Well, maybe a cat would like that, but the thought makes me rather queasy. Yuk.

  86. Cloudbuster
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:26 am [Reply]

    MW: Wow, that was easy to call. I wonder how Mary would deal with it if one of her meddling victims was being held back from following her dreams by an irrational fear of taxis?

  87. Mikey
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:27 am [Reply]

    @Bill the Butcher (#64): With the zombies and midget submarines this looks like something for newspaper Spiderman to ineptly deal with.

  88. Odie Odo
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    Sam & Silo: As long as people know you’re kin to Snuffy Smith, you get no respect. Even if you’re the mayor of Yeehaw Junction.

  89. Anonymous
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:35 am [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#81):
    Here’s a pretty clear picture of what Mark’s future has brought to LoFo over the past year…
    A.) A mountainside that remains covered with a large debris field from the plane that crashed because Mark wanted some close-up photographs of bighornsheep!
    B.) Setting Rhododendron Lake on fire and destroying more than 500,000 acres of a nearby federally protected endangered wilderness area in a ravaging forest fire (or lost forest fire) caused by Mark allowing his careless wife to operate a propane camp stove without his instruction by not turning off the valve before going to bed!
    C.) Green canoes! Lots and lots of green canoes … and one yellow canoe!

  90. Plugger Shrug
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#y301):

    “Pluggers: Yeah, like Pluggers have a sense of humor.”

    Some of us do (and most of us at least think we do — and if I’m only in the latter category, please be gentle when you break it to me) but, yes, today’s PLUGGERS strip depicts actions beyond the pale, even for me. (Not handwriting a letter — I’m actually planning to do that today — but ever using “Ha Ha” as an interjection in one.)

    Some of the most (intentional) wince-making episodes of VIC AND SADE (see, I told you that I *am* a Plugger; I keep bring up old time radio shows) were those in which Sade forced her husband and (adopted) son to listen to ear-clawingly-off banal letters from Sade’s sister; “Ha Ha” always made its dreaded appearance in those.

    My own sister’s letters are just like Sade’s sister’s. . . .

  91. Odie Odo
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    Crock: Hey, dancing “girls” with orthopedic shoes and trusses is still better than no dancers at all.

  92. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:43 am [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#81): @Anonymous (#89):

    One thing that’s easily pictured in Mark’s future is, as stated by Mr. Anonymous Sources Jr. in comment #89, … GREEN CANOES! Lots and lots of GREEN CANOES!

  93. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:44 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#92): And, of course, one oddball yellow canoe named Rusty!

  94. bunivasal
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:49 am [Reply]

    I was going to write a biting commentary on the inconsistent use of size in Momma. You know, something about how she has a tiny Fisher-Price chair and a sideboard that could easily contain Momma herself several times over.

    Then I began thinking about a sideboard crammed with tiny homunculi. Dozens of Mommas. Would they be active and struggling, their voices keening loudly in the cramped space? Or would they be still, plasticine, and glassy eyed?

  95. Mikey
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#79): Maybe as a plot twist Elrod and Evans can do a “Trading Places” bit with Rusty and Gunther. Gunther can have his ‘Big Life Adventure’ in the far away land of Lost Forest and teach Cherry to sew using handmade thread made from tree bark and lichens, and, since rumor has it that Quill is from Australia, he can teach Rusty all about how Australian flapjacks rotate clockwise when you flip them and stuff about koalas and other wacky Australian shit. Mark won’t even have to try to ignore Gunther and both strips become more entertaining. Win-win for everybody.

  96. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    MW: I’m going back to Santa Royale.

    Ken: I’m coming with you!

    MW: No! You can’t!

    Ken: It’s close to Hollywood. I can get into film!

    MW: No, Ken, it’s complicated.

    Ken: But I want to, Mary! It will be perfect for us.

    MW: Don’t make me say “no” again. The last man who couldn’t take “no” for an answer did not have a happy ending. Capice?

  97. Mikey
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:53 am [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#89): Word on the street is no more yellow canoes this year as all of the colorists’ yellow ink has been used up by Ken Kensington’s hair.

  98. "Safety Last" Shrug
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    @anon (#32):

    Crankshaft: “You ran over a kid with your bus? ALRIGHT! Hey, everybody, MARY’S IN THE CLUB!!!”

    (Cranky gets all misty-eyed, remembering his own ‘first time.’)

  99. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:05 pm [Reply]

    @Plugger Shrug (#90): Heh, I’m picturing a show in my mind called “Vic and the Marquis de Sade.” With the crack of a whip, chains rattling and cries of pain (or is it pleasure?) being broadcast over my radio.

    This is what happens when you only listen to “mature” programming…

  100. JudeMorrigan
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    I’m pretty sure that when they refer to Sarah’s college fund, they mean the money she’s saving up to buy a college rather that worrying about her tuition costs.

  101. Liam
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:09 pm [Reply]

    Beetle Bailey-”And in, and out, and in, and out.”

  102. Shrug (and an earlier 899 Shrugs)
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:10 pm [Reply]

    @bunivasal (#94):

    Now you’ve made me rethink R.A. Lafferty’s classic sf story “Nine Hundred Grandmothers” with each grandmother replaced by a Mel Lazarus “Mama.”


  103. seismic-2
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:12 pm [Reply]

    MT: “I called the police and they already have Jared in jail!” But when Jared canoed away in the first place, wasn’t the whole reason supposed to be that he needed to contact the sheriff? If they had a phone all the while, then why did Jared have to leave? Oh the heck with it, just pass the pancakes.

  104. Majicou
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:12 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (and an earlier 899 Shrugs) (#102): Is that the basis for the classic film Too Many Grandmas, starring Olympia Dukakis?

  105. Hibbleton
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    MT: Meanwhile, Doc’s Black Fly disease has progressed to the tertiary stage: befuddled bliss.

  106. Illustrator Steve
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:24 pm [Reply]

    @Mikey (#95):
    That senerio would especially be a win-win for Mark since he could then avoid taking Gunther fishing while Quill avoids taking Rusty fishing which could leave the door open for Mark and Quill to go fishing together … that is, until Mark rushes out the open door after receiving a long awaited phone call from Bill Ellis! Come to think of it, Cherry would probably enjoy having Gunther stay at the cabin for awhile … at least until ranger Tommartin gets off duty!

  107. walt d
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:24 pm [Reply]

    RMMD: Try as I might, I cannot work up any sympathy for the cost of sending Sarah to college some forty years from now in real time, given that her parents are well-paid professionals and will eventually be inheriting Melissa’s fortune.

    (RMMD: The response to this would be, yes, but Sarah will be entering Harvard at ten, and Melissa might not have the decency to kick off by then. And the response to THAT would be, Harvard will obviously give Sarah a full ride, so none of it matters anyway.)

    RMMD: Making a child responsible for its own college fund is a novel idea for the upper middle class. “Madison, you want to go to college, right?” “I guess so.” “Well, you better get started saving, because your mother and I work hard for our money, and guess what, we’re going to spend it on ourselves.”

    RMMD: This is the point at which June, who seems to spend even less time at the office than Rex, stiffens, and says, “Hey, I’m not your servant. Clear your schedule and you take her.”

  108. Baka Gaijin
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#67): “Big money, big money” is from “The Wheel of Fortune?” I thought it was from that devil show. Have they sold the ceramic dalmatian on Wheel yet?

    @Bill the Butcher (#78): Good night. Sleep tight. Don’t dream about rotten molars, right?

    @GeoGreg (#85): “Hot-dog broth” makes the best gravy. Not bad as a substitute for hot water in Stove Top Stuffing.

    @Plugger Shrug (#90): There’s a non wince-inducing “Vic and Sade” episode? I haven’t heard it.

  109. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:45 pm [Reply]

    MT – “And gimme someathem Jimmy Deans.”
    “Uh, all of our sausages are made in house…”

    So bald guy is just going to rot in that cabin.
    Johnnycakes and VT (!) Maple syrup for all! Andy too!

  110. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:47 pm [Reply]

    MT: Now let’s have flapjacks and that home made maple syrup!

    Doc: Actually, no, Mark. When Jeff found you in the woods, he shot you in the back of the head. When we confronted him, Jared killed all of us – including Andy here. We’ve been waiting for you to come before we all depart together. Didn’t it all seem too simple? I mean, the conveniently placed hornet’s nest? The bear that just happened to find the hidden artifacts for you? And you never wondered how you got Jeff back here in handcuffs in a few minutes, even though you traveled for two days going out? The police picking up Jared before you even got here? Didn’t it all seem strange to you?

    MT: No, that’s how these things always happen. Isn’t it?

    Doc: I don’t think so. But then again, I almost never get out of the cabin. Well, I learned my lesson, huh.

  111. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:47 pm [Reply]

    Speaking of eating, don’t eat these – it sounds like eating Butterfish
    THe reviews are priceless, esp. #2 which I won’t mention as it’s cockpit stuff : )

  112. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:52 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#110):
    So Mr. Dunlap is actually The Silver Fox, beckoning them out of purgatory and into Heaven. That makes a lot of sense, actually.

  113. walt d
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    MT: That is one big dog. I hope it lives off the land, and not off of fifty pound bags of dog chow. I don’t think writing for wildlife magazines is all that remunerative.

    Mt: Sure, man. Invite yourself and your friends in for pancakes and maple syrup. Never mind that the syrup takes forever to make, and the host lost a gallon of it towards the beginning of the story. He’s probably got a barrel of it in reserve.

    MT: There’s going to be a lot of eye-rolling in the Big House when the returned cons shamefacedly admit to the scheme that got them sent back.

  114. Baka Gaijin
    January 15th, 2014 at 12:57 pm [Reply]

    @walt d (#113) first Mark Trail comment: And hope to God the 50 pounds of dog food is the, ahem, low output kind.

  115. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:06 pm [Reply]

  116. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    I swore I’d never read, respond or think of 9CL EVER again. There’s been a lot of chatter about this story line, and I’m interested in WWII history, so I got hooked. Damn you ‘mudgeons.

    So this is early in the days after the Normandy invasion. That the invasion would be a success was by no means a guarantee at that point. To state it as if it were a fact in front of a Nazi officer would get you a beating or worse. This officer Bert being portrayed as a spineless, simpering coward is fantasy. Murdering innocent civilians doesn’t actually make you “brave”, but you have to have a spine at least. He’s a commander of men in wartime, but he can’t deal with a French whore talking smack about his precious 3rd Reich.

    And what about this Martine? She cast her lot with the Nazis for the past 4 years and now decides to jump ship? After turning the American in? How is THAT going to be judged by the Allies? Can’t wait for the Battle of the Bulge, when you flip sides again. Five minutes after telling the Allies about a German spy hiding in your attic or something. Then she wakes up in early 1945, sells out an English officer and then joins Charles DeGaulle’s French army.

    If you’re going to have a historical flashback, McEldowney, make sure you have at least a grain of historical accuracy.

  117. greghousesgf
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    Mutts–I hope they get eaten.
    Zits–you have a mouth like that and you’re complaining about your hair and your complexion?

  118. Meg
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:30 pm [Reply]

    Luann: I am actually starting to hope that maybe, just maybe, this storyline will be resolved by Gunther realizing that he’s just fine the way he is. Hope is a dangerous thing, I know.

    Gil Thorp: Kid, when they use sports metaphors to talk about sex, that isn’t what they mean. Also, protip, just because someone congratulated someone before you did doesn’t mean you’re outta luck. You can go congratulate them too.

    DtM: It’s funny because kids like to run in front of traffic.

    Love Is…: This one is so weirdly specific. Usually these things make a sort of convoluted sense, but today I am baffled. Wouldn’t it make more sense to say that cleaning up after your children in general shows them love? Why the fridge specifically? Also, why are these children allowed unrestricted access to the refrigerator? Maybe my mom was just really strict, but I sure wasn’t allowed to just open up the fridge or the pantry and snack on whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. Kids today.

    Beetle Bailey: “So that weird boner you’ve got going on there, it’s there for no reason? No reason at all?”

    JP: Wait, wait, April works for the NSA and she’s totally baffled as to why someone would be following her? April works for the NSA???

    RMMD: Oh, I get it. Rex’s lawyer also has a daughter, named Sarah, and he gambled her college fund away without her knowing and needs this deal to make it up before she finds out. Way to help a brother out, Rex.

    Phantom: “This is so unfair!” LOL! Tell you what, Rick Grubber, when I used to do that, at about age 12, my mother would just roll her eyes and tell me life isn’t fair. What do you think the little guy with the bow and arrows is going to do?

  119. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:32 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#114):
    Just don’t feed Andy those sugar free gummy bears I mentioned.

    (Seriously, I’ll bet this candy could be very dangerous for pets too)

  120. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:40 pm [Reply]

    9CL – So, last week we were cutting away from Bill bleeding out in the field to recreations of scenes from “It Happened One Night”. Are we still doing that? Can this tender moment between the AWOL German officer and his French doxy make sense as something cribbed from a screwball romcom? Or were the It Happened…. bits just a complete non sequitur/space filler/brain freeze on the part of the author and we have now moved on to an original McEldowney creation?

  121. TheDiva
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:53 pm [Reply]

    @Master Softheart (#43): I feel like Brooke wants to fetishize the “strapping uniformed Aryan beefcake” aspect of the Third Reich without getting into that whole unpleasant “rampant and horrific human rights abuse” thing. Thus we have Gramma Edna having a torrid liason with a German POW–but he’s not really a Nazi, you see, merely a conscript who was Just Following Orders and who never did anything really bad (or if he did, felt really, really sorry about it afterward). And now Mademoiselle Burberesque is the mistress of a Nazi officer, but it’s not her fault because she has no choice, she’s only doing what she must to survive and Lord knows there were absolutely zero opportunities for the French who really opposed the Nazi occupation to do anything about it.

  122. S. Stout
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:55 pm [Reply]

    Luann: This will go one of three two ways:

    a) Horrible moral: If someone doesn’t like you, change your personality completely.
    b) Horrible moral: Change is impossible, you will always be a loser.
    c) Moral: Find someone with similar interests that likes you for you.

    When the Evans duo realize what they’ve done they will jump to a new storyline hoping you don’t notice the train wreck they’ve left behind.

  123. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:59 pm [Reply]

    SlyFox – Swine, Serious accident

  124. Uncle Lumpy
    January 15th, 2014 at 2:02 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#120):

    I read this whole goddamn mess as “Bleedin’ Bill’s Tour of those Wacky Wanin’ Days of WWII” — with your host, Bleedin’ Bill! It’s like the “Europe in Chaos” parts of Gravity’s Rainbow, but with more Bleedin’ Bill.

  125. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 2:05 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#123):
    State Farm ™ Insurance

  126. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 2:21 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#124): Hmmmm. I sense another superhero movie franchise (and, lo, we are already in the midst of the inevitable reboot!). Bleedin’ Bill could fight crime by, say, bleeding all over the floor of the bank, causing the robbers to slip and fall and drop their weapons, at which point Bleedin’ Bill grabs them and snaps their necks.

    Actually, Bleedin’ Bill would have to be the sidekick to Superlative Girl or whatever Burber fantasy takes the lead role. Maybe Superlative Girl flashes her calf at the bad guy, then Bleedin’ Bill snaps their neck when they fall unconscious at the sight.

  127. Smiling' Stan Shrug
    January 15th, 2014 at 2:35 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#126):

    “Bleeding Bill” might make an interesting superhero, but 9CL, unable to resist jumping the shark, will then give him a kid sidekick, “Ejaculating Amos.”

  128. Odie Odo
    January 15th, 2014 at 2:40 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#99): I’d listen to a radio show called “Vic and the Marquis de Sade.”

    I’d also listen to:

    Sleazy Aces
    S&M Gypsies
    Black Widder Brown
    Stabber McGee & Molly
    Don McNeill’s Torture Club

  129. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 2:55 pm [Reply]

    @Smiling’ Stan Shrug (#127): “Ejaculating Amos”

    Wasn’t there an SNL character like “Orgasmman”?

  130. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:05 pm [Reply]

    Today’s McEldowney-to-Earth translation:

    “Screw you, do your own killing. The Americans just might win this war, you know.”

    “Jane, you ignorant slut.”

    “Listen, one of us is going to wind up swinging from a lamppost, and I’ll be damned if it’s the slut who’s been sleeping with you for the past years, Herr Tinydick.”

  131. Perky Bird
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    “And did I ever tell you that the Comanches worshipped a sun god they called ‘Ihop,” and also believed that their warriors could gain his strength by eating flapjacks, which are round and golden like the sun?”

  132. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:41 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#129): There was the pre-South Park movie from Parker and Stone called “Orgasmo”, where a Mormon missionary made porn movies as the titual superhero, who had a ray gun that caused the target to McEldowney in their pants.

  133. Aviatrix
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:41 pm [Reply]

    2C&C: Best part is that the guardian angel is watching the A-Team.

    A3G: What’s in Pittsburgh so important she has to leave the apartment, and yet so loathsome she missed the apartment before she has even left it? Is Pittsburgh where she goes to buy fashion?

    Spider-Man: Can’t win a fight with a remote controlled makeshift robot, but he’s got a one-liner ready for the crowd. Did he learn about being a superhero by watching TV?

    BB: Beetle has never been depicted with a paunch. Beetle is not in a position that causes belly fat to bulge out. Beetle was dreaming about Sarge.

    Crankshaft: Are they planning a week of bad puns based around the traffic-mangled body of a seven-year old?

    MW: Look how close to the booth seat that table is on Ken’s side. New York diner customers must be amazingly svelte.

    Slylock: Sadness, sleigh and Satan.

  134. Amos Snarkadder
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:47 pm [Reply]

    RMMD If Sarah is so damned clever, let her get herself to the meeting.

    A3G Margo has just 4 days to find a new roommate and dump Tommie’s stuff on the curb. Get busy, girl!

    FW Egad! That lunch lady is Ed Crankshaft in drag!

  135. Aviatrix
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:48 pm [Reply]

    @Kevin on Earth (#16): Who yells “Gangway” anyway?

    My mother. She’s eighty.

    @Horace Broon (#19): He has limited English. “Good” may mean simply “is permitted to enter the cave” [because Stripey-Butt said so]. The latter may be giving her enough rope to hang herself. Or maybe it’s time for his eldest son to take a mate.

  136. tallyHO
    January 15th, 2014 at 3:50 pm [Reply]

    @Aviatrix (#133):

    NOW I must read today’s Slylock!
    Thanks for convincing me.

    Since it is Wednesday, I presumed it is another one of Slylock Fox’s Broken Mirror World of Mismatched Mates, so I hadn’t bothered to read it (or any other non-Heathcliff comic).


    I guess I’m behind all the way today.
    But, I will read Slylock. Soon.

    I will get around to it.

  137. walt d
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:02 pm [Reply]

    9CL: It has been suggested here that Bill killing the German after he (Bill) supposedly surrendered was a violation of the rules of war. Presumably a soldier executing a wounded soldier who poses no threat is also a violation. I have no idea. A civilian who is already in deep shit killing a helpless wounded soldier with thousands of his associates just down the road, now that is a definite no-no.

    A3G: Off to Pittsburgh. Most presumably remember when Tommie (?) was considering following some guy to Denver, and Margo freaked. How could Tommie leave The Big Time for Nowheresville? It would really help this chauvinism if A3G’s NYC didn’t look and feel so much like 1950s (your choice of mid-size rust belt city). The sole thing that’s happened in this strip since I began following CC that suggests it is actually set in NYC is Tommie’s brief foray into show business. MW has at least tried to suggest that she really is in NYC through the locales (Central Park and the Waldorf) and the food. (Do New Yorkers really have a thing for pizza or their own special version of pizza? I have no idea, but the strip tries to make it seem so.)

  138. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:15 pm [Reply]

    @walt d (#137): 9CL – A civilian who is already in deep shit killing a helpless wounded soldier with thousands of his associates just down the road, now that is a definite no-no.

    Brooke seems to have forgotten that this scene is taking place within crawling distance of the invasion beachhead. Disposing of the body of a uniformed American solder without arousing suspicion would presumably not be a terribly difficult task.

  139. THe Ridger
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:18 pm [Reply]

    RMMD: I think what Rex is saying here is that if Sara gets this deal, all that money that has heretofore been earmarked for her college will now be available to him to spend on whatever it is he doesn’t get handed to him. Or maybe, since he’s just Rex Morgan MD, not a member of the Spencer-Driver-Parker cabal, a better one of whatever he does get handed to him.

  140. Congo Bill Bailey
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:20 pm [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#128): I can think of a few more off the top of my head:

    Red Skeleton
    Kill Harris/Alice Slay Show
    Nick Carter, Masher Detective
    Arthur Godfrey’s Terror Scouts

  141. Alter Ego
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    love is… stains on the furniture.

  142. Amos Snarkadder
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    MW “Ken, I love New York and I enjoy exploring the city with you…”
    But I can’t wait for the other shoe to drop, so pick a response from the list below (or come up with your own):
    a) “But I’ve been wanting to ask, ‘What’s with the yellow streak in your hair?’”
    b) “But why haven’t you gotten me tickets to ‘Kinky Boots’?”
    c) “But when are you going to invite me up to your apartment to bump nasties?”
    d) “But you should stop planning everything and be more bold and spontaneous.”
    e) “But you’ll never satisfy me the way a skilled physician can.”
    f) “But that scarf you bought me. It’s not really cashmere, is it?”
    g) “But Shelley is a really nice girl. She’s sweet, she makes her own clothes, and all the girls like her. You should ask her out.”

  143. Écureuil Écumant
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:23 pm [Reply]

    “No,” says Mark. “We have to keep eating them. We neet to eat these flapjacks … forever.”

    Flapjacks, Mark? Really, there’s no call to be vulgar. You ain’t seen nuthin’ till you’re down on a muffin … then you’re sure to be a-changin’ your ways.

  144. tallyHO
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:28 pm [Reply]

    @Aviatrix (#133):

    Okay, I got around to reading Slylock Fox’s Wonder Winterland Currier & Ives Tableau of Alliteration I saw a lot of things which began with the letter S but Ol’ Scratch must’ve slipped right by my line of sight, unless that was him slithering about in the rabbit hutch of snow watching others slide sideways.

  145. Amino Man
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:29 pm [Reply]

    @Calvin’s Cardboard Box (#120):

    9CL Mceldowny has successfully revived the word “Doxy” from the grave. It has been used in this blog more in the last week than since probably the 30′s.

  146. DAS
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:36 pm [Reply]

    @Lawyerbob (#45): I was thinking that Andy jumped onto Mark because Andy was planning, a la Marmaduke, to EAT Mark. Andy’s thinking “wow! once he’s stuffed full of flapjacks and maple syrup, this human is sure gonna taste good!”

    BTW, after seeing Mark Trail talk about flapjacks and maple syrup, I sure want some good ol’ ‘murkin flapjacks and maple syrup. Lately I’ve been having Æbleskiver and agave syrup for breakfast, which is really yummy, but MT has got me thinking my current go-to breakfast treat is not ruggedly American enough.

  147. Mikey
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:45 pm [Reply]

    MT- Why do I get the feeling that that Ed Dunlap is going to say something like: “Good idea, Mark!(slow pan to close up of Ed Dunlap) Ya know folks, there’s nothing as satisfying as flapjacks and homemade maple syrup after foiling an idiotic and poorly thought out Indian artifact heist. But the closest thing to that magic flapjack feeling is the feeling you get with a Reverse Mortgage from Lost Forest Financial….”

  148. Lassie
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:45 pm [Reply]

    MT: I look at that panel from Mark Trail and think….”happy ending to a kids type adventure show…forced chuckles all around (alls well that ends well!)….cue sprightly ending music before a cereal commercial and coming attractions for Next Week On Mark Trail…key word is forced, fake, jollyness. Crisis is over, back to normal, let’s all have a laugh and pretend we’re having a big kiddy’s dream of all you can eat flapjacks smothered with real maple syrup.


  149. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:54 pm [Reply]

    Luann: What “big life adventures” has Quell had? He hasn’t mentioned anything other than growing up and going to school in Sydney, then a year in San Diego, then back to Sydney and now SD again. And he’s a virgin, just like Gunther. Since every man in this idiot strip is desperately running away from their women who fling their bodies at them, Gunther might want to get romantic advice from one of them. Oh, he’s dating one of them. Wow, that’s convenient. You know, ask her what she likes. Then do it.

    What goes on in Evans’ head where he sees women and men like this? The men slavishly pine away for the women, but then when they get the woman to finally go on a date, they can’t figure out what comes next? The women toy with the man’s courtship for years, then finally give in. Then whorishly thrust themselves, trying to disrupt the valor, virtue and purity of the vulnerable male. Oh, pity them all.

  150. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 4:57 pm [Reply]

    @Amino Man (#145): You mean “Doxy” isn’t a laundry detergent? I swear that I used some once to clean the bloodstains off my conscience.

  151. Hogenmogen
    January 15th, 2014 at 5:02 pm [Reply]

    Phantom: It just came to me. “Lady good / Man bad” sums up the entirety of 9CL.

  152. walt d
    January 15th, 2014 at 5:07 pm [Reply]

    MW: Regarding this nonsense about the “specialness” and vibrancy of NYC. A fair number of other American cities (led by New Orleans) also consider themselves to be pretty special. Most, perhaps all, of them, unlike the NYC of the comics page, also have sizable neighborhoods of people of a non western European background. The NYC of the comics page is about as cosmopolitan as Wichita*–a perfectly nice little city but definitely not New Orleans or Santa Fe.

    (If this blog had a larger readership I would expect an annoyed post from a resident, pointing out that Wichita is ethnically diverse for its location, has significant entertainment and dining opportunities, and is highly supportive of the arts–none of which is true of the comic strip NYC. In my defense, I said “about as”.)

  153. Al of the Christian Singles Jungle Patrol
    January 15th, 2014 at 5:19 pm [Reply]

    @walt d (#152): Hey! Don’t you be bad mouthin’ my Wichita!

  154. bats :[
    January 15th, 2014 at 5:48 pm [Reply]

    Garsh, I love happy endings, even the ones that happen in panels 4 and 5!

  155. demoncat4
    January 15th, 2014 at 5:52 pm [Reply]

    rmmd that board must really like sarah to want a meeting with her given that she is five years old. and from the look of june she is not happy where the deal is going. mw. and so it comes mary is preparing as she recovers from her near killing by taxi to tell ken that as much as she likes new york she feels its time to go back to santa royal and start ruling again. and thus have ken prepare to die from heart break

  156. Midtown
    January 15th, 2014 at 5:53 pm [Reply]

    Crankshaft: Folks, folks, don’t get so excited! The kid’s OK. Otherwise Mary would be in custody for child endangerment since she waved her out into the traffic. (Or maybe they’ll be coming by later to have her do the perp walk)

  157. Voshkod
    January 15th, 2014 at 6:08 pm [Reply]

    @Anonymous (#89): Aye, but that’s the past. What of the future? What does Mark imagine in the very shallow depths of his souls? A log castle, nestled on the highest peak in Lost Forest. A heavy mist on the lower slopes, redolent of maple syrup and butter. A protective ring of claws and teeth, his loyal minions, the animals, waiting for the word that will unleash them upon the works of modernity. A bevy of pink-shirted brunettes, catering to his every whim (most of which involve flapjacks, it appears). An obulette filing up with the bones of orphaned wards. That is Mark’s dream. That will be our nightmare.

  158. Cloudbuster
    January 15th, 2014 at 6:52 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Gunther is rapidly depleting whatever small sympathy I might have had for him. What a whiny dweeb.

  159. Gg83
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:08 pm [Reply]

    I’m sharing this here because I doubt that anyone else will truly understand the horror of my nightmare. It was a fairly typical dream of having a very important upcoming test that I had to study for. However, this one was about the trajectory of comic strip characters’ relationships. I had to study up on Luann especially, and had reached a point where Rosa got so fed up with Gunther that she decided to start dating Brad, when thankfully I woke up. ‘Tis to shudder.

  160. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:26 pm [Reply]

    @Voshkod (#157): No, Mark dreams of a log cabin loaded with syrup. His dreams are of the most literal kind.

  161. Aggie Mack
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:44 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#140): Can I play, too?

    Life Can Be Dreadful
    When a Ghoul Marries
    Romance of Helen Tramp
    Yours Truly, Johnny Dildo

  162. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:52 pm [Reply]

    MT: A few things you can count on in life. The sun rises in the east. 2+2=4. And Mark? Mark loves pancakes.

    Momma: Man that is one appropriate caption. Sonia’s question to her son is certainly going to give me a sleepless night.

  163. Dr. Pill
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:52 pm [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#50): Buckminster Fuller

    I’m really gettin’ tired of these syrupy plots in Mark Trail.

    And I call baloney on Asshat sayin’ “war to end all wars” ’cause he has no idea what it means. He likely saw the phrase in a comic about an alien-versus-zombie vampire robot invasion or something. It’s just the writer/artist wanting to show how clever he is in slipping in a reference about the 100th anniversary year of the start of that war. Have a little consideration for history, Batiuk, and find someone with the gravitas to put the events in better context. If you can find someone in your world, that is.

  164. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:53 pm [Reply]

    MW: No, Ken, nobody’s going to be exploring butt here. Hope you kept the receipt for the KY.

    WofI: I thought at first the younger snowman meant father as in “priest” and the fridge was a big blue confessional. Now that I stand corrected, I’m also left to wonder why he chose to separate his head from his body.

    9CL: Again, this guy is a poor excuse for a pitiless Nazi.
    He: Kill the American.
    She: I don’t really feel like it.
    He: Okay then. See you Saturday?

    RMMD: “Oh, and make sure you bring an entourage for her as well. The bottled water caddy is especially key.”

    GA: The news crew left hours ago and at this point Walt is recounting his imaginary adventures to a stuffed moose head.

    BB: Beetle and Miss Buxley’s experiments in flaccid insertion are a matter I never would have asked about.

    Phantom: Well if he doesn’t get to go in the cave Dick Grubber is just going to pout and maybe hold his breath until he turns blue and what are the Ghost and the Poison Pygmy People going to do about that?

    H-Cliff: This being Heathcliff, he’s probably under the impression that it’s made from actual dogs.

    Lockhorns: “My mom never offered free wi-fi” is some kind of unholy hybrid of oldster hard knocks story and First World Problems meme.

    A3G: Tommie can’t wait to be back in 3-G right up until the marriage which is totally going to happen and isn’t a well-worn pseudo plot development.

  165. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 7:56 pm [Reply]

    @Midtown (#156): Wait, someone in the driver’s pool gets arrested for child endangerment, and it’s not Crankshaft? Lot of gamblers must be losing money on that one!

  166. Doctor Bombay
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:01 pm [Reply]

    MT: Mr. Dunlap in panel two looks like Jimmy Stewart and I can’t help but read his bubble without Jimmy’s voice in my head …”Well now Mary..I mean Cherry…I ah..I ah called the police see and ah …they ah …already have that Jared fellow in the bank… ah gosh darn it ….I mean the jail.”

  167. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:12 pm [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#15): I picture Owen the idiot standing in front of a brick wall, saying “What’s the deal with cafeteria food?” to a stony faced crowd.

  168. Calvin's Cardboard Box
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    MT – In a case of art imitating life, Mark’s enthusiastic call for End of Story pancakes, while surrounded by his castmates, including the beloved Andy the Dog, is indisputably a shout-out to the CC trope regarding his favorite breakfast food.

  169. Ebenezer Wasabi
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:15 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#24):

    If Bill O’Malley is unequipped, where the hell did Uncle Jolly Gay Roger come from?

    Obviously, he had help. His time-traveling friend Billy Pilgrim probably made a “donation” in Bill’s name.

  170. tallyHO
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:17 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#164):

    Poison Pygmy People?
    Is the Phantom Down with PPP?

  171. popamatic
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:17 pm [Reply]

    @Calico (#123):

    Slylock S’s: sow, signature (Weber 1-15), snot, skull/spine/spleen (after the airborne pig lands), sh*t (in the aforementioned pig’s pants, but I guess technically you can’t see it), spy (under the rabbit), and, ahem, … sausage.

  172. tallyHO
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:26 pm [Reply]

    @popamatic (#171):

    Correction: a Surplus of sausage.


  173. Avoiding the Madding Crowd
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:44 pm [Reply]

    The Phantom: The blonde isn’t following the Phantom into the cave just to check out the rock formations, if you get my drift. The cupid symbolism of the arrow-wielding pygmy is obvious, and the statement “Lady good, man bad” is obviously referring to the Phantom’s sexual preferences. By the looks of the bad guy’s prissy pose and his huffy “This is so unfair!” it appears that he may not share those preferences.

  174. Anonymous
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:48 pm [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#160): Nicely done, sir.

  175. Elk Meadow
    January 15th, 2014 at 8:59 pm [Reply]

    @Hogenmogen (#116):

    I am so damned….

  176. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:39 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#144):
    Also, as they careen down the icy hill – “Shit!”

  177. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:40 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#170): Yeah, you know he!
    That actually is what the Bandar are called in-universe, which makes one wonder what they’re trying to convey. “Don’t eat us”?

  178. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:40 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#172):

  179. Rana the Pedantic Wet Blanket
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:41 pm [Reply]

    @Horace Broon (#19): I think the “lady good” is because she’s good at punching. Punching is important in Phantom land.

  180. Calico
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:44 pm [Reply]

    @popamatic (#171):
    Super Sunday “break” fast, after they go ass over whatever.

  181. Droopy Says
    January 15th, 2014 at 9:52 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#167): So that’s why no bricks have attacked Spiderman lately. Owen the Idiot has bored them into a stupor. Who’d have thought that a lack of sense could succeed where the spider-sense always fails?

  182. seismic-2
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:29 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#167): I like the idea of Owen standing in front of a brick wall, especially if the firing squad shoves that stupid hat down his throat first.

  183. Liam
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:32 pm [Reply]

    MT-”I’m sorry, Mark, but there won’t be any homemade syrup for the flapjacks. The jar that Jared dropped was my only jar of homemade syrup. Do you have any idea how much syrup is needed to make one jar?”

  184. Liam
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:38 pm [Reply]

    Pluggers-Pluggers know how to write? Who’s been teaching them how to write?

    Love Is-But not washing his fingerprints off of you.

  185. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:51 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#101): Because she’s playing all night
    And the music’s all right
    Buxley’s got a squeeze box…

  186. Artist formerly known as Ben
    January 15th, 2014 at 10:52 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#182): lol. I can get behind that. “That” being the firing squad, of course.

  187. tallyHO
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:27 pm [Reply]

  188. Sequitur
    January 15th, 2014 at 11:51 pm [Reply]

    Wow! I found some very old files of mine and discovered a very early recaptioning I did many, many years ago. It looked like this.

    I can’t find the original but I think it was an ad for something.

  189. Sequitur
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:00 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#185):

    Buxley’s got a squeeze box…

    And Beetle just sleeps all night.

  190. Droopy Says
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:02 am [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#186): I’d join the firing squad if I had better eyesight. Or if you gave me something easy to aim, like grenades or a flamethrower.

  191. Poteet
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:07 am [Reply]

    MT: How far ahead in time have we just leapt? A few days? A few weeks? I don’t see Rusty. Maybe he’s locked in some handy abandoned cabin, yelling about how he wants to go fishing.

  192. Der Schnärkïnätör mit Ümläütën!
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:10 am [Reply]

    @Illustrator Steve (#79):

    Welp, you got #1,2 & 3 right!

  193. Poteet
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:12 am [Reply]

    MW: I know that Ken lost his career and his wife, the first to throat nodules, and the second, I think, to death. But he also lamented about losing his friends, and that I don’t get. Did they all decide to dump him when he dyed the top of his head piss yellow?

  194. Sequitur
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:20 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#193):

    But he also lamented about losing his friends, and that I don’t get. Did they all decide to dump him when he dyed the top of his head piss yellow?

    Nah. The hair they could live with. The friends abandoned Ken when he started to hang out with Mary.

    “She ain’t gonna meddle my ass.”

  195. Poteet
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:22 am [Reply]

    9CL: Leaving aside the question of who, where, and when these bizarre humans are supposed to exist, what kind of awful woman leaves a helpless wounded man alone with a military person who just expressed a very direct desire to see the wounded man dead, just so she can make an artistic exit down the stairs as she delivers a couple of Brookesque would-be-clever lines of dialogue? Ugh, ugh, ugh, ugh, ugh. 9CL is right next to “loathsome” in the dictionary.

  196. Poteet
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:24 am [Reply]

    JP: Yes, do get out of there! Some of us have been hoping for that for days!

  197. Poteet
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:29 am [Reply]

    A3G: Look at that throat-hiding collar. Are we really sure that Tommie is a woman? If she were secretly a man, it would make A3G so much more interesting.

  198. Droopy Says
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:29 am [Reply]

    Spiderperv: Just about everyone called this, didn’t they? Spiderman’s desperate quest for a lubricant.

    Dick Tracy: This story needs to be interrupted by one of those “let us tell you about something irrelevant” panels.

    Family Circus Freaks: “And my foots want to start walking into that sweet, white oblivion.”

    Funky’s Flunkies: No, Asshat cannot recognize an original thought. However, his skull has been colonized by the ancient mold from yesterday’s cheese, and after taking up residence in that dark and empty space it has evolved to a level of sentience far beyond anything Owen the Idiot ever mimicked. That doesn’t mean it’s more interesting than Asshat, just smarter.

    Judge Privileged: Cloud cover? Foolish lackey of the NSA, the NRO’s FIA radar satellites laugh at your cloud cover!

    Mark Trail: . . . as opposed to returning the artifacts to their rightful owners, i.e., that selfsame tribe. Now he curse of the stolen artifacts has entered the life of the Family Trail, who remain blissfully unaware of the way the trees are slowly surrounding their cabin, isolating them from the outside world.

    Dick Grubber, Straight Man: He’ll spend all next week figuring that out, won’t he?

    Pluggers are dyed-in-the-fur Protestants who would never touch papist knee pads.

  199. Poteet
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:30 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#194): Aha! One of his friends was probably driving that taxi.

  200. Baka Gaijin
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:40 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#193): My guess is they were sick of hearing about how nodule removal ruined his Broadway career. Again. And again. And again. Like a Manhattan Plugger if such a thing could exist.

  201. jim, some guy in iowa
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:51 am [Reply]

    JP: day after day of these two twits whining at each other. what the hell is Woody Wilson’s problem? Elrod and TRMT would have had April put Randy on his entitled ass twice already in this time.

  202. jim, some guy in iowa
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:57 am [Reply]

    Rrrex, MD: I genuinely cannot make up my mind: are we really supposed to take the “Sarah Morgan, Drawer of Horsies and Most Excellent Artist” thing at face value, or is it a parody or joke of some kind? And if it’s the latter, could someone explain the joke to me?

  203. jim, some guy in iowa
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:58 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#193): Ken didn’t do that himself. His former friends gave him a swirly.

  204. Aviatrix
    January 16th, 2014 at 12:59 am [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#144): I suppose that subterranean set of sight organs might suggest a skunk or squirrel, but I said what I saw.

  205. seismic-2
    January 16th, 2014 at 1:01 am [Reply]

    Say what you will about Mark Trail’s always gulping down the flapjacks, it beats the heck out of what Ken Kensington is having for lunch today.

  206. Der Schnärkïnätör mit Ümläütën!
    January 16th, 2014 at 1:07 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#205):

    Lemme guess….Salmon Squares?

  207. Aviatrix
    January 16th, 2014 at 1:41 am [Reply]

    @Droopy Says (#198): I’m leaning toward believing that the writer/artist team have a bet going where the artist draws a pornographic sequence and the writer has to spin it so it gets past the censors. When they swap over the writer will submit dialogue like “lube it up and push a little harder” and the artist will have to sell it.

  208. Dale
    January 16th, 2014 at 2:02 am [Reply]


    Enumerating all the things wrong with this story wrap-up is tedious, pointless and painful. Have the writers no sense of pride or shame?

  209. Huckleberry Fink
    January 16th, 2014 at 2:15 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: Ken continues to plead his case at his favorite French restaurant (“Chien de la Maison”) while Mary enjoys a steaming cup of hot-dog broth.

  210. Huckleberry Fink
    January 16th, 2014 at 2:25 am [Reply]

    Apartment 3-G: Roy’s pre-wedding jitters turned to panic when he realized his bride-to-be has no body below the waist.

  211. Huckleberry Fink
    January 16th, 2014 at 2:40 am [Reply]

    Rex Morgan: June puts on her best Duck Face*. I have to admit, it looks better on her than J.C. Dithers!

    See today’s “Blondie” comic

  212. Huckleberry Fink
    January 16th, 2014 at 2:45 am [Reply]

    Spider-Man: Oil and grease is Peter Parker’s secret to a wrinkle-free complexion.

  213. Vanya
    January 16th, 2014 at 2:47 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#195): well, he’s not helpless, as we learn today. Apparently Ms. Collaborator took one look at Bill and decided instantly she would throw her lot in with him and set up the German officer she’s been (voluntarily, mind you) shacking up with for the last 4 years.

    I’ve always wondered, as a literary exercise, would it be possible to write a WWII story where a decent, moral American would sympathize with the Germans against the American protagonists? Brooke is showing that it can be done.

  214. Droopy Says
    January 16th, 2014 at 5:48 am [Reply]

    9 Nutsi Lane: If it were not for one thing, I would call the next major development here. “Do not shoot!” the Beastly Hun whimpers. “I am in fact an agent for the Allies! It is I who won this battle for you!”

    “You?” scoffs Bully Billy. “How? You look like a weak-chinned switchboard operator!”

    “Indeed I am, and that is how I won your battle!” Bert says. “It is I who did not notify Hitler of the invasion, by telling our staff officers that we had just octupled our charges for long-distance calls. Our thrifty Prussian generals decided that reporting by mail would be more economical.”

    Bully Billy stands there like a man who gives a subject some actual thought. “So . . . if you’re on our side, why did you want to kill me?”

    “To maintain my secret identity as an Allied agent who cooperates with Mouthy Martine of the resistance.”

    “So you wanted to kill me because we’re on the same side?”

    “Of course! What is the point in having a deadly secret if you can’t kill someone to protect it? And now that the Amis have landed, you are within fraternizing distance of the Wehrmacht and might reveal this secret during a night of illicit passion with a Bavarian who sings bass in Wagnerian operas.”

    Bully Billy shakes his head. “But now that we’re here and you’re a prisoner, your secret is meaningless.”

    Bert is aghast. “But if my secret is meaningless, I have betrayed my people for nothing, so I must kill you to validate myself!”

    The only problem with this explanation is that it makes more sense than Brooke’s explanation, assuming he remembers to give us one. Plus, hard as I tried, it isn’t as long-winded as anything McBeefwit would write. That’s more than one problem, but if Brooke won’t keep track of his problems, why should I?

  215. gleeb
    January 16th, 2014 at 7:02 am [Reply]

    ‘bean-Having finally decided what to eat, Owen the Idiot and Cody go to join the 30-year-old woman who haunts the high school cafeteria. But then, Wedgeman the motiveless bully appears! Are the sandwiches safe?

    Dick-More dull narrative as Mary helps reinforce her syndicate’s copyright.

    Thorp-See, this is what actual high school students do. They get their lunch while discussing actual lives, not spend three days trading creaky old gags with a woman three times their age.

    Luann-Gunther got that jacket at a jockey’s garage sale.

    Spidey-Sorry, Manhattanites! Environmental regulations on your crowded island take a back seat to Our hero keeping a mask on!

    ‘shaft-Ed is disappointed. No death.

    Mark-Gee that was nice of him, considering that stuff had been looted from them in the first place.

  216. Cloudbuster
    January 16th, 2014 at 8:47 am [Reply]

    MT: Yes, it sure was nice of Mr. Dunlap to donate all that money to the local Native American tribe. I hear they used it to buy a new roulette wheel and more slot machines for their casino!

    MW: There have been no taxis in Santa Royale since the bloody “Yellow Purge” back in the ’80s.

    Phantom: These days when everybody is offended by everything, I’m kind of surprised this comic hasn’t gotten grief for “racist” depictions of African tribesmen.

    Zits: Whoa, “Save more, spend less!” Who woulda thought? So how much did they spend on that financial advice?

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