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I know this sounds absurd, but shouldn’t that deer be on a … leash? Or something?

Mark Trail, 3/31/14

As was foretold in prophecy Friday, Mark has shrugged off a sucker-punch to the face and responded with fisticuffs of his own, somehow managing to wind up and knock Marlin down with a right hook despite literally being an inch and a half away from him. Still, this victory is bittersweet, as Mark looks poignantly at the avalanche of sea turtle eggs cascading comically out of Marlin’s green poachin’-sack. Yes, there’s an exclamation point at the end of his dialogue, but based on his stricken facial expression I would guess that this is as close as we’ve ever come to seeing Mark on the verge of tears, bereft over the senseless loss of endangered animal life.

By the way, is sea turtle egg-poaching an actual thing? Like, could those eggs ever hatch now that they’ve been removed from their nest and plopped in a big pile in a bag? Do people try to keep sea turtles as pets? Do people eat sea-turtle eggs? Have we been reading the wrong meaning of “poaching” in this storyline all along?

Apartment 3-G, 3/31/14

Thank goodness Tommie has rented a freakishly enormous car from the 1940s so that there’s plenty of room for her deer friend to … sit? stand? … in the back seat. I love the way Tommie just talks to Lily like she can understand English, while the deer stares ahead with its black soulless eyes, thinking about murder.

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 3/31/14

Good lord, Snuffy’s disgust with Jughaid is palpable. “I don’t care if he is kin, I ain’t gonna have no aesthete living under my makeshift roof!”

Pluggers, 3/31/14

Pluggers are just straight-up car thieves and don’t care what you think about it.

295 responses to “I know this sounds absurd, but shouldn’t that deer be on a … leash? Or something?”

  1. Congo Bill Bailey
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:23 am [Reply]

    @Snarky Parker (#y163):

    Dick Tracy: The animated series will actually star a detective by the name of “Joe Jitsu.”

    Hemlock Holmes, Heap O’Calorie, and Manuel Tijuana Guadalajara Tampico “Go-Go” Gomez, Jr. were unavailable for comment…

  2. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:26 am [Reply]

    MT: Or, more precisely now that the bag has gone flying, sea turtle omelet.

    JP: “So you’re saying that my future daughter-in-law is about to lose her beloved father either to the ravages of cancer or to a violent assassination? Let me get my notebook—this is great stuff for my next novel!”

  3. Lydia
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:29 am [Reply]

    Sea turtle eggs are apparently a black market aphrodisiac. When I was in Costa Rica I saw PSA billboards that said “My eggs are not the solution!” and pictured a smiling sea turtle holding out viagra pills in its flipper. Never knew that before I went there!

  4. Congo Bill Bailey
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:30 am [Reply]

    Josh: By the way, is sea turtle egg-poaching an actual thing?

    Unfortunately, the answer is “yes”!!!!

    http://www.wptv.com/news/region-n-palm-beach-county/juno-beach/kenneth-cornelius-coleman-guilty-in-sea-turtle-egg-poaching-case-in-juno-beach

  5. pugfuggly
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:31 am [Reply]

    MT “NOOOO! I was going to make the biggest ever endangered omelette for the Poacher’s Book of World Records!”

    A3G Tommie was on the doorstep when she heard the engine rev and the crackle of gravel as the car eased back onto the dirt road. As she turned her head she noticed a man, probably Jack Riley himself, staring through the window, slacked-jawed. It was the last she ever saw of Lily or her car, but three weeks later, the post cards began to arrive…

    BG&SS “Jughaid! Stop yer nonsense and eat your dowels!”

    Pluggers gotta pay for those pharmaceuticals somehow. Plug Life!

  6. Buck Ripsnort
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:31 am [Reply]

    That first MT panel looks so awkward, it could only be swiped from Gil Thorpe.

  7. Roy of the Limberlost
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:31 am [Reply]

    You know back in the days when Barney Google actually appeared in his strip, he would have concocted a brilliant scheme in which Jughead Smiff’s work would be shown at an outsider art show, of course the scheme would collapse when the wealthy widow Barney was playing would fall madly in love with Snuffy, and Spark Plug would have to be worked in there somehow…

  8. Dennis Jimenez
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:32 am [Reply]

    Pluggers – Clueless entry system….

    BG&SS – Wood ya like some syrup on those Lincoln logs….

    A3G – Bleat me baby – eight to the bar….

    MT – Ain’t no brag – Papa’s got a brand new bag….

    Adios Amigos, DJ.

  9. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    A3G-Happiness Falls is obviously an inferior place to New York and no place to raise a deer if they still have unpaved roads.

    FC-That’s just a myth perpetuated by the ‘March Goes Out Like a Lamb’ people.

    JP-”Now we must defend ourselves. We shall fight to the last man. How good are you with a gun?”

    Love Is-Hello, Child Protection Services.

    MT-Ping pong balls!

    MW-Thanks to Mary’s paranoia all residents of Santa Royale don’t carry around debit cards instead they carry around large bundles of cash.

    MW-Are there no debit cards or ATMs?

    Pluggers-Next he shall use a brick.

    RMMD-”They’ve met this woman from New York City named Tommie.”

    Sally Forth-Mason, must be one of those ‘Too Dumb to Live’ types that is frequent throughout entertainment.

    Slylock Fox-Fortunately for us there is more jar than wax so Max accidentally breathed in some of the fumes while trying to seal up the jar. Sadly for us Slylock is fine because he has Max do all the heavy stuff.

    Archie-”I wish we could afford to do a test drive instead of just sitting in the car.”

  10. Chareth Cutestory
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    A3G: Nothing smarter than driving with a wild animal in the backseat and deciding not to wear a seatbelt.

  11. Aggie Mack
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#4):

    Favorite quote from the article: “I don’t know nothing about no turtle eggs.”

  12. pugfuggly
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:35 am [Reply]

    Archie Hey! It’s just like the Seinfeld episode with the smelly car, with a few minor alterations, since you’re not allowed to say ‘B.O.’ on the comics page.

    C’shaft Hey, ever notice how grey squirrels get their birdseed like this, but black squirrels do it in a similar way in spite of the fact that they are a distinct species?#ZoologyDefJam

    Crock “Poor Pernell was run over by a tank, hit with a cannonball, and caught in a historical anachronism!”

    FW “Get it? Because the ones most difficult to find will generally take the most amount of searching time and will thus be last. I call it a ‘logic pun’ and it’s part of my Vulcan stand-up act…”

  13. Jess
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:41 am [Reply]

    People who do sea turtle conservation (like me) dig up eggs after they’ve been laid and carry them in a bag to a corral where they rebury them and are able to monitor temperature and conditions. Then when they hatch, they release the babies safely into the water. This protects the eggs from scavengers and poachers.

    Luckily, sea turtle eggs are not brittle like chicken eggs; they kind of feel like ping pong balls.

  14. Jeck
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:43 am [Reply]

    I’m not aware of anyone trying to keep sea turtles as pets, but the eggs of the animal are a delicacy in parts of the world where environmental protection is second-rate.

  15. The Rt. Venerable Pasdordan
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:43 am [Reply]

    Slylock Fox: “What will Slylock use to stop the fumes from escaping the beaker?” Max, duh.

  16. Mibbitmaker
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:43 am [Reply]

    FW: Uh, excuse me, you two? Could you help me track down a copy of the first comic book I ever bought? It’s a Sad Sack Laugh Special from 1969, about late spring or so. No, it has nothing to do with superheroes or nerd culture….. Aw, damn, their heads exploded. Including Batiuk’s!

    MT: Are those teeth? Huh, punching with consequences. That’s new.

    MW: Formerly Monk’s Deli. I’ll bet there’s a Kramer’s down the street…

    9CL: The case for unisex burqas.

    RMMD: A villa in Tuscany? I thought that wasn’t possible! I’d heard a couple people discuss that at Monk’s — I mean, Jerry’s Sandwich Shop…

    Phantom: Not murder. Kidnapping? Ooh, that’s so much better!

    ZtP: ….Better than Jerry’s Sandwhich Shop.

  17. Aggie Mack
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:44 am [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#4):

    And that’s a lot of sea turtle eggs. Apparently, Kenneth Cornelius Coleman has a serious ED problem.

  18. pugfuggly
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:46 am [Reply]

    @Jess (#13):

    First of all: COOL! That’s a really awesome thing to be involved in. Is that a career, or do you volunteer for that?

    Second of all: It would be hilarious if it were revealed that Marlin was a turtle conservationist all along, who just used the taxidermist thing as a front to keep genuine poachers from catching the turtles who use his little island as a breeding ground. Until Mark Trail showed up and wiped out an entire generation of them with one punch, that is…

  19. nescio
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:47 am [Reply]

    BGSS: I think Snuffy’s digestive track just recoiled at the thought of another 24 carrot dinner.

  20. pugfuggly
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:47 am [Reply]

    JP “So we led some deadly assassins to your door on the eve of your daughter’s wedding, huh? What happens now? I mean, will your staff still be available to clean and serve meals once you’re riddled with bullets?”

    MW “Iris, I’m just a little concerned about Tommy. By giving him access to cash, you may be unwillingly encouraging his destructive addictions, and that can only le-OH THANK GOD THE MENUS ARE HERE! I’ll have two of everything with extra mayo. In fact, just bring the jar to the table. Hurry, hurry, HURRY!”

  21. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:48 am [Reply]

    @Jess (#13): Yay, you! I visited a conservation sanctuary off the coast of Borneo, and it was truly amazing to see a sea turtle laying her eggs, babies hatching, and the wonderful work people were doing.

  22. Cassandra Cat's Lawyer
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:49 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Mark’s superpowers include a right elbow that freakishly bends backwards almost 90 degrees! *And* the mystical ability to distinguish different types of eggs at the merest glance!

    Okay, so they’re maybe not the most awesome superpowers ever. But, c’mon, he’s more than a match for the Lost Forest supervillians, whose superpowers include spectacularly dumb planning and a magnetic attraction to Mark’s fists.

  23. Old Folkie
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:55 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie is driving a rare 42 DeSoto retrofitted with 41 Cris Craft wheelhouse.

    FW: Since Skunkhead eats at Montoni’s why don’t they just swap pizzas for comics, and avoid money altogether…

  24. Mibbitmaker
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:56 am [Reply]

    Tommie’s Delusions, 3-31-14

    P1: “Hey, crazy lady! Stop driving all over our lawn! I better warn the neighbors!”

    P2: Tommie gets out of the car she’d been driving in all alone. She sees the “deer” get into the driver’s seat and drive away! The neighbor sees Tommie running after an imaginary car, the real one parked on a fence. “NO, LILY, NO!”

  25. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:58 am [Reply]

    @Lydia (#3): Sea turtle eggs are apparently a black market aphrodisiac.

    I knew it had to be something like that — maybe in Chinese Traditional Medicine? Is there some sort of CTM committee that surveys endangered species? “Hey, there’s only 300 of these critters left! I bet you could get a boner from one of those! Go get ‘em, boys!” (In the Chinese tongue, of course).

    // P.Z. Myers, the biologist, once joked that there WAS a secret, sure-fire, alternative medicine aphrodisiac. Scientists don’t like to talk about it, but apparently it consists of the dried, ground genitalia of CTM practitioners. I think he was joking, anyway. It should be tried, for Science!

  26. Jess
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:04 am [Reply]

    @pugfuggly (#18): I volunteer in Mexico and Costa Rica during nesting season, and we walk the beaches all night watching for turtles. We measure them and check for identifying markings, and once they’ve flippered out of sight, we move their eggs.

  27. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:06 am [Reply]

    FW: They always make excellent toilet paper or fire-starters.

    MT: Well, they’re all SMASHED Sea Turtle Eggs now!

    RMMD (a.k.a. The Adventures of Sarah’s Book Deal): “Tuscany! How nice! Maybe we can talk to Milton about setting up a studio there for Sarah’s Book Deal!”

    Love is…: A creepy tippy-canoe.

  28. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:09 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#25): It amazes me that when there are cheap effective drugs, like Viagra and its competitors, that actually do work, people insist on paying vast sums for powdered rhino horn and stuff like that, which emphatically don’t.

    // Although, there might be a placebo effect, who knows? And, if you did spend a small fortune on some illegal rare species CTM stuff, and it didn’t work, would you admit it?

    “Hey, Mr. Chin! How was that rhino horn I sold you?”
    “Um, well, I… it was great! Yeah, it was great! Best sex ever!”
    “There you go. Another satisfied customer!”

    (Also in the Chinese tongue.)

  29. Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:12 am [Reply]

    Luann:

    “They’ll probably wanna hear about our plans for the first time we have sex. And we don’t have any.”

    “OK, Let’s Plan. Evening, after supper.”

    “Morning, before breakfast.”

    “No.”

    “Evening it is, then. Three petticoats?”

    “Gawd, NO. Six petticoats!”

    “Alright. Six it is then. T.J.?”

    “Only if he wears the gimp gear.”

    “YESS!!”

  30. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:13 am [Reply]

    @Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy (#27): Well, they’re all SMASHED Sea Turtle Eggs now!

    Heh. But I believe turtle eggs are not hard, like chicken eggs. Their “shells” are flexible and leathery. Or so I read somewhere. So they COULD be ok.

  31. Valla Dia, Mate of Ulysses Paxton
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:15 am [Reply]

    @Ankara garage door guy (#125):

    “Shipping charges to Mars might be a bit steep as well.”

    Can I put it on my MarsterCard?

    ///Actually, I’m opening up a boutique myself. Stop by — I VallDiate parking!

  32. Kevin on Earth
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:16 am [Reply]

    MT1: Mark: “Delicious sea turtle eggs!!!”

    MT2: Mark: “Welp, looks like Cherry won’t be ‘drowsy with happiness’ anytime soon…”

    GT: Is he giving the baseball roster at gun point? 1920s gunpoint?

  33. Lassie
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:23 am [Reply]

    Apt. 3-G: That poor fawn is going to fall in the car and break a leg, or maybe more. How I LOATHE this stupid ugly strip.

    Mark Trail: Yes, turtle eggs are leathery. I have heard that the yolk will cook if you boil one, but not the white. And….most baby sea turtles that hatch and make for the sea NEVER make it there. A shocking number are eaten by predators before they hit the water a short distance away…..That’s all I got. I visited a “turtle factory” lol in Georgia that worked to preserve the sea turtle, go turtles!

  34. bunivasal
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:23 am [Reply]

    Jughaid the artist. By creating art from food sustenance-farmed in the desperate Appalachian wilderness, Jughaid comments on the calamity of the artist, who finds nourishment not in paltry vitamins, starches, and fats, but in creative expressions.

  35. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:30 am [Reply]

    @Jess (#13): I hadn’t seen your post earlier, but thanks for confirming that.

  36. Voshkod
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:31 am [Reply]

    OK, so between panel one and panel two of today’s Apartment 3G, the fawn morphed from deer to chupacabra. For once, I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s A3G.

  37. DrZoidberg
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:33 am [Reply]

    When I’m at work, I try not to curse – or at least, not curse where my employees can hear me. I have been using ‘monkey trumpets’ as an alternative, but thanks to Mark Trail, I have a new epithet – ‘sea turtle eggs!’.

    This is going to be great.

  38. merde
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:33 am [Reply]

    On Crankshaft: I wanna see one of the squirrels climb up to Crankshaft’s window and show him the pressed ham.

    On Family Circus: Better question is why the parents let Billy out during a category 5 hurricane? My guess: time to thin out the herd.

    On Phantom: Wow, she’s lucky! Wambesiland: where all the cool athletes go after winning a championship. “I’m going to Wambesiland!”

    Or: Wham-Bam-Thankyou-besiland

  39. Dr. Mabuse
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:34 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Mark: “Oh, they’re smuggled pearls? So sorry, old sport.” (hastily dusts off the front of Marlin’s shirt).

    3-G: After all these weeks, Lily finally has to speak up: “No, that’s ‘J. R. Wiley, Venetian Blinds,’ you imbecile!”

  40. Oregonian
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:36 am [Reply]

    I missed the weekend Mark Trail strips. Did they show the bit where he pulled out a comb and got every hair back into place before throwing some punches of his own?

  41. Dr. Mabuse
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:38 am [Reply]

    @Roy of the Limberlost (#7): Ahhh, I remember when Spark Plug came to Hootin’ Holler. Some woman from New York brought him, I believe, in the back seat of a rented Duesenburg, saying he couldn’t stay in her apartment anymore. . .

    @Oregonian (#40): Even better! They showed Cherry in a two-piece bathing attire! Va-va-va-voom!

  42. SpokesSeaTurtleEgg
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    All of the more land-oriented critters in the comics used to laugh at us, because our designated protector was (snurk) Aquaman. So when JackElrodBallIndustries Inc. approached us with an offer of a lateral transfer into the care of Mark Trail, we were wiling to give it a try. And the land critters were nasty enough not to warn us about Trail. Thanks a lot, mud brothers.

    We’re hoping Aquaman is willing to rehire.

  43. Bootsy
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    Sorry if it’s been said but Ping Pong Balls!! Bunny Rabbit and Mr. Moose sure to follow.

  44. Esther Blodgett
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    Yesterday’s One Big Happy did “birdseed-raiding squirrels” way better than today’s Crankshaft. Come to think of it, you could probably randomly generate infinite variations on “Yesterday’s X did ‘Y’ way better than today’s Crankshaft” and never be wrong once.

  45. Joshua
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    Luann: Brad wants a huge wedding, so they can invite … who? His parents, Luann, T.J., Toni’s brother, Shannon, and some generic unidentified people from the fire department? I think he’s severely overestimated the size of his supporting cast.

  46. Jim in Wisc.
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    Loser-Ann: More proof that Bwad is the woman in this relationship. He’s the one who wants the big, fancy wedding.

    Blandie: Oh, c’mon! This has to do with Dagwood gorging himself at the dinner table. No way in heck he’d have forgotten that!

    Marcus Autrailius: A little nod to Liam for a great comment: Marcus Autrailius for 31 March 2014.

    Meddlin’ Mary: Of course, Wilbur’s idea of a romantic lunch with his girlfriend is at a sandwich shop.

    Sexy Rexy, Quack: Heather says she wishes you hadn’t given Milton that prescription for super-strength Viagra.

  47. Barbarian Princess of Mars
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    @Valla Dia, Mate of Ulysses Paxton (#31): Oh, joy! A fellow Martian! And a full-figured gal too! (Well, we all are, as far as I can tell from Mr. Frazetta.) Perhaps we could order together and split the shipping.

  48. Ian Beste
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:51 am [Reply]

    @DrZoidberg (#37): Hooray for Zoidberg!

  49. btown
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:52 am [Reply]

    MT: That’s known as the “Black Power” punch.

  50. Ian Beste
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    Jumble The Baltimore comedian was just JOSHING.

    Or has Jumble Jeff used that one already?

  51. Horace Broon
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    DT: The hidden message in today’s strip: “An animated series based on a comic strip with strong similarities to Dick Tracy! Doesn’t that sound like an awesome idea? Is anyone from Warner or Disney reading this?”

    MtM: Ah, that no-good crook Bzz Bzz Bzz (the man whose name sounds like a buzzing noise).

    Marv: After a week of Marvin’s dad fishing, we’ll all be begging for the return of Marvin Manor.

    Phantom: Half an hour later. “We have taken the lady to Wambesiland, Ghost-Who-Walks. Um, that is Phantom-code for throwing her off the cliff, right?”

  52. Christopher
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:54 am [Reply]

    Barney Google and Snuffy Smith: Jughaid has been tetched ever since he saw them funny lights in the sky. Soon he will sit back and stare at his plate of peas and Lincoln Logs and say, “This means something.”

  53. Odie Odo
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    @Aggie Mack (#17):

    And that’s a lot of sea turtle eggs. Apparently, Kenneth Cornelius Coleman has a serious ED problem.

    You Might Be a DUD in the Bedroom If… you need sea turtle eggs to help get “it” up.

    (Apologies to Jeff Foxworthy!)

  54. Baka Gaijin
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth: SAT Analogy Question: Wilbur Weston having lunch at a sandwich shop is as unexpected as
    a) Reeky Rat being accused of a crime
    b) Rex Morgan wearing a pissy face
    c) Crankshaft being a total asshole
    d) all of the above

  55. Mikey
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:55 am [Reply]

    MT- Wheww!! Only sea turtle eggs in the bag! I thought it might’ve been Rusty in the bag but it turns out he’s safe and sound in panel 2 of today’s A3G.

  56. Mibbitmaker
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    @Joe, the Upper-Evergreen Guy (#27): re: MT:

    “Now it’s gahbage!” — Oscar Madison

  57. Albert
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    @merde (#38): On FC: No worries; the weight of Billy’s ponderous melonhead will keep him from being carried off by the wind. Alas.

  58. Lloyd S.
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:00 am [Reply]

    Wait! Did Mark visit the ocean? I thought he was still by one of his lakes in Lost Forest. It’d be pretty cool if all those sea turtles decided to trek inland to meet and get help from the great protector with fists…

  59. Baka Gaijin
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:01 am [Reply]

    Slylock Fox: Damn, I got it wrong. My answer was to stuff the fat dirty rat into the beaker.

    Apartment 3-G: Lily is biding her time. In a few minutes the car’s interior is deer chow.

    Mark Trail: Mothballs? Fisticuffs between doppelgängers over a bag of stinking mothballs?

  60. Vince M
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    @Jess (#13): Some years ago I drove through the night to Edisto Beach, SC and got there bright & early – I got into a conversation with an old gal who had just finished relocating a bunch of sea turtle eggs to higher dry sand inaccessible to the mother. Still kind of wish I’d gotten there earlier, would’ve liked to help out.

  61. Arabella
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    Drabble: And again we see the hazard of the cartoonist’s three-week lead time.

    Jump Start: Some good advice when the worries of the world are getting you down: “Read [your favorite comic]. You’ll forget all about that other stuff.”

  62. Marc
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail- Those aren’t sea turtle eggs, they’re golf balls. In order to afford his own private island, Marlin has decided to cut back his golfing expenses, without giving up golf. So in order to save money, he no longer buys balls, and instead goes diving into the ponds on the local mainland courses, and harvests everybody else’s errant shots.

  63. White Rabbit
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    MW: Thanks for lunch, Wilbur, I’ll be forever in your debt.

    Further to Mary Worth, I predicted some weeks ago that Mary would try a double meddle once removed, using Wilbur as her cat’s-paw. Useless Wilbur is so lust-maddened that he still hasn’t even gotten started. Even Mary must be looking for results by this time.

    I haven’t entirely given up on that one yet, but here’s another: Tommy is using Mom’s money to help the miserable homeless of downtown Santa Royale, possibly by preaching the gospel to them. “My friends, I was once as you are today, a drunken human wreck, living in the soulless hobo jungle that is Godforsaken downtown Santa Royale, where we made our livings by selling drugs to each other…”

  64. Barbarian Princess of Mars
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    @Valla Dia, Mate of Ulysses Paxton (#31): Why I believe I’ve found a picture of you and Mr. Paxton! What a lovely couple you are! You’ll have to come over and meet my kitties.

    // I’m so sick of these bronze bikinis, aren’t you? They pinch in all the wrong places, and need constant polishing. And heaven help you if you gain a pound or two in the Barsoomian feasting season!

  65. Digger
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:06 am [Reply]

    MT: I don’t know how Mark can allege that the sea turtle is endangered. If they are in fact laying sacks full of eggs, we should soon fear being overrun by an army of baby sea turtles. Marlin should be commended for doing his part to stave off this invasion.

  66. seismic-2
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie would normally have a hard time explaining to the Rent-a-Highway-Battleship company how the back seat came to be soaked in deer urine and feces, except that the creature in Panel 2 is more nearly a jackal, so she will have to explain instead how the back seat came to be covered with the retched-up remains of a half-digested possum, three fingers from a toll-booth operator, and a huge blob of the general sort of God-knows-what glop that is usually displayed in a frame on the walls of the Mills Gallery.

  67. Hibbleton
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    A3G: Say what you will about the artwork. At least, Tommie’s not steering the car with reins.

  68. TheDiva
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:13 am [Reply]

    @Jess (#13): First, thank you for volunteering your time to such a worthy activity. Second, my mind had already inserted the sound of ping-pong balls bouncing into today’s Mark Trail, and your description just solidified that mental image.

    A3G: Lily has the sad, haunted look of a creature that knows it must depend on Tommie for its continued health and well-being.

    Pluggers take pride in the fact that they can’t remember to take their damn keys out of the ignition.

  69. Little Blue Bicycle
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    @Lydia (#3): Rusty: “Why would men want sea turtle eggs, Mark?
    Mark: “They are an black market aphrodisiac.”
    Rusty: “What’s that mean?”
    Cherry: “C’mon Rusty, how would he know?”

  70. word-doctor
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Luann: Just got a glimpse of Niece Unibrow carrying a bepillowed ring. Gonna go to the local junior high and see if one of the sixth graders can hook me up with mom’s Xanax.

    MT: When they do their Scooby Doo denouement to figure out who was buying sea turtle eggs, I’m betting it’s the Chinese. Not Orientals (1980), nor heathen Chinee (1880). And that’s PROGRESS, friends and neighbors!

  71. White Rabbit
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:17 am [Reply]

    I get a daily email from woot.com, which features exchanges between two monkeys, Monte and Mortimer, who are apparently employees at Woot. Yesterday’s was as follows.

    Mortimer: Which comic strip character is your favorite, Monte?

    Monte: That’s a tough one, but I think solely for breadth of investigation into the human condition it has to be Funky Winkerbean.

    Mortimer: Yeah, I know what you mean. I liked his glasses.

    Monte: What about you?

    Mortimer: Well, it’s a tough call but I’m going to go with myself.

    I’ve clicked their Unsubscribe button. This can’t go unchallenged!

  72. Little Blue Bicycle
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie soon realized that Riley was visiting the psychologist next door: http://tinyurl.com/ob24qk5

  73. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:19 am [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Torn from the headlines.

  74. Will
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:20 am [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#59): Re: Slylock: Me too. The rat looks to be exactly the right size. That or Max’s stupid bowler.

  75. Myrtle
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:21 am [Reply]

    A3G: (Lily’s unseen thought balloon) Leave the keys! Please leave the keys!!!

  76. hypochrismutreefuzz
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:23 am [Reply]

    J. Riley Veterinarian is a funny name.

  77. Vince M
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    @Lassie (#33): Re. baby sea turtles: “No, Steempy, we must not interfere. For though it may seem cruel, eet ees nature’s way!” – Ren Hoek

    While I’m pop-culture referencing, I wish A3G would reference the deer-in-the-car scene from the Chris Farley movie “Tommy Boy”.

  78. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:25 am [Reply]

    @Will (#74): That or Max’s stupid bowler.

    That was my thinking. I don’t think you could melt the candle fast enough to seal the whole container, but if you shoved the bowler in there, you could just seal the edges around it.

  79. The Mighty Untrained FOOZLE
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    @Mibbitmaker (#16): Oh, I hope those are teeth. Please let them be teeth. That would be awesome. Mark has punched off facial hair and overalls before, so it seems that teeth would have been covered by now, but…

  80. TheDiva
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    9CL: Brooke may want to rethink the subtext of all those drooping guns in panel two.

    C’shaft: The Black Squirrel of Death has come for Crankshaft’s soul at last!

    FW: I suppose we should all be thankful Batiuk isn’t into stamp collecting instead. Maybe.

    JP: “Well, let me put it this way–you know the last season of Game of Thrones….?”

    Luann: It’s funny because they have absolutely nothing in common except the desire to have sex with one another.

    MW: You know you’re in trouble when Wilbur is the dependable rock in the relationship.

    Phantom: “Feisty Lady Reporter, you’ve been kidnapped and drugged by a jungle vigilante. What are you going to do now?”
    “I’m going to Wambesiland!”

    SM: Dither around until a third option presents itself, like you always do?

  81. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#4): Snarpologies for my #73. You were there way ahead of me. 3 to 5 dollars per egg?

  82. Brett
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:33 am [Reply]

    MT: Have to defend Elrod here. That’s not a right hook, that’s a classic southpaw uppercut. Mark fights southpaw and takes most people out with a lead hook or a lead straight. But Marlin made the mistake of throwing a jab at him from the side in close, so Mark unleashed an uppercut and it is actually a very well drawn uppercut.
    Mark is even winding up to unleash a rear left hook to the body if the upper cut doesn’t knock the spit out of Marlin and drop him.

  83. Mibbitmaker
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:47 am [Reply]

    @The Mighty Untrained FOOZLE (#79):

    MARK: “You have eggs that do not belong to you, mister!”

    MARLIN: “Okay, okay, Trail…. I’ll trade you these eggs for my teeth.”

    MARK: “Deal!”

  84. Mikey
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:49 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#81): Yes $3-5 per egg!! I know taxidermists are all one percenters but this explains how Marlin can afford his own island.

  85. Dennis Jimenez
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    @hypochrismutreefuzz (#76): That carrier pidgeon that won the medal in World War I was a small animal vet….

  86. Flippin Arkansas
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    Even though I knew what Josh’s Pluggers joke would be before I read it, I still literally laughed out loud. By the way, has #pluglife started trending on Twitter yet?

  87. Flippin Arkansas
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:02 am [Reply]

    MT: Is Mark punching Marlin or is he just squeezing his fist tightly so as to make potent Mark Trail sweat drip into Marlin’s mouth? It would be enough to knock anyone asunder.

  88. Joe Blevins
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:11 am [Reply]

    A3G: Okay, it’s a Monday, it’s the start of the new work week, and we wanna kick things off with a bang, something that’ll grab readers’ attention and make them want to keep following this story. We need something really exciting for that first all-important, scene-setting narration box. How about “As Tommie drives…” Wait, is that maybe too exciting? Let’s dilute it a little. “As Tommie drives slowly…” There. That’s the A3G sweet spot.

    MT: I’d like to think that “Sea turtle eggs!” is Mark’s approximation of a minced oath, like something he might say after hitting his thumb with a hammer.

    SNUFFY: Is there a reason Loweezy is going so far out of her way to avoid making eye contact with her family? Is she maybe having a religious experience? She has the facial expression of someone who’s getting direct instructions from God.

  89. Marc
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:13 am [Reply]

    @Hibbleton (#67): Yet. She’s not steering the car with reigns yet. Don’t underestimate the Bolle/Shulock team’s ability to make things even more nonsensical.

  90. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    Hey Uncle Lumpy! Serious spam outbreak on yesterthread.

    // You do sleep sometimes, I guess.

  91. Fashion Police
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    From our outpost in suburban Palermo we note several items today worthy of comment. However, we shall restrict ourselves to Dr. Morgan’s teal shirt. Really, Doctor? Teal is for chiropractors.

    The Palermitani, by the way, are rather less stylish than the Milanesi, or even the Romans. Otherwise, Sicily is both curious and affecting.

  92. the REAL Mark Trail
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#73): THANK YOU for posting that!

    @Brett (#82): YES!

  93. Carter
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:19 am [Reply]

    Mark, if those were sea turtle eggs, they’d be splattering all across the floor. You’re beating a man up over a sack full of golf balls.

  94. Baka Gaijin
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:21 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#73): Torn from the headlines or causing the headlines? Seems a little too coincidental to me.

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#78): On second thought, couldn’t the Max use the candle to light Slylock’s fox flatulence and burn up the beaker’s contents?

    @The Mighty Untrained FOOZLE (#79): Marlin makes an unconventional tooth fairy.

    @Fashion Police (#91): Are the blood oranges tasty?

  95. agony
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:24 am [Reply]

    @Brett (#82): yeah, I say that’s one helluva punch.

  96. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:28 am [Reply]

    MT-Moth Balls!

  97. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:32 am [Reply]

    Pluggerz: Why lock the doors at all? Don’t they live in the placid countryside where the local County Clerk dishes on your private life to a total stranger on the phone? Car theft? That’s from those big city folk who come around and “save” a deer by domesticating it, then releasing unprepared it into the wild. The Pluggers call it “liberal guilt”. The city folk call it a “thankless job” The deer usually walks away ungulateful.

  98. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#92): You’re very welcome. Though Congo Bill Bailey, #4, got the same story much earlier than I did.

  99. Joe
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:37 am [Reply]

  100. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:37 am [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#94): Torn from the headlines or causing the headlines?

    Yes it is disturbing. Now everyone knows sea turtle eggs go for $3 to $5 per… Who knows what mischief ne’er-do-wells and miscreants will be up to.

  101. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:38 am [Reply]

    MT: Sea turtle eggs! I’m so surprised! I had NO idea! I also had NO idea that if I had grabbed for the bag instead of going for my trademark punching, there would be about 400 more turtles in the world by next season. The takeaway message here must be to punch the villain first!

    –So people come to this island from all over the country so that they can poach turtle eggs with Marlin? Can’t they just get the eggs delivered?

  102. the REAL Mark Trail
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:44 am [Reply]

    @agony (#95): THANK YOU!

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#98): my APOLOGIES to Congo Bill!

    @Liam (#96): F.Y.I. folks… sea turtle eggs are ROUND (and a bit “leathery”) I also chose to not draw some of the eggs cracking open and “squishing” turtle embryos flying out

  103. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:45 am [Reply]

    @Brett (#82): Well, it’s good to know that Elrod knows how to draw punching. I’m more concerned with the plausibility of the story line rather than the authenticity of the action artwork.

    *I may be mistaken, but isn’t “southpaw” a term for left hand? So a “southpaw uppercut” is an uppercut from the left hand. But he’s clearly connecting with a right.

    **And your implication, sir, that Mark will take more than one punch to drop him is sheer heresy.

  104. aphthakid
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:49 am [Reply]

    A3G: The deer really looks like it should be talking back to Tommie. And that it might be smarter than she is.

    9CL: Uh oh! A woman has shown her thigh and now all the men are having a stroke. And not the fun kind.

    I also like how, again, the author has completely forgotten that the D-Day invasion is supposed to be going on so this random collection of Nazis is just cruising around looking for locals to beat up.

    Snuffy: What are those yellow tubes supposed to be anyway? They’re obviously too rigid to be cooked pasta of some sort.

    RMMD: Milton got totally ripped on opium and wrote an epic poem but he passed out before he could finish it. So, the usual.

  105. Lorne
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:52 am [Reply]

    Today’s Mark Trail (Punch/Reveal/”SEA TURTLE EGGS!”) is the perfect distillation of the strip’s pulp-green aesthetic.
    Andy Warhol is struggling to rise from the grave so he can get it on a silkscreen.

  106. Dale
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:54 am [Reply]

    MARK TRAIL

    Why wasn’t the sack tied closed?
    How much would it weigh? MT characters have an amazing ability to hold heavy objects in one hand, at arms length, and without shifting their bodies.

    Trail! Where did you get that sack of illegal eggs?
    MT: They’re not mine! I beat up that man and stole it from him!

  107. SnickerDoodle
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:55 am [Reply]

    Pluggers: Is the AOL email address supposed to be an added ironic ‘layer’ or Pluggerness? Or is it just a sad, sad truth?

  108. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:58 am [Reply]

    I call BS on Slylock. Sure, you can drip candle wax over the solution, and if there is enough of it to cover a bubbling liquid without the vapor breaking through from pressure, it might work. In the mean time, you’re standing over the beaker breathing in the fumes – which have already begun to fill the room. Why not just dump the whole thing out the opening in the door at Count Weirdly, who happens to be standing right there, and would never allow Sly and Max to sit there for 15 minutes dripping candle wax over his beaker full of bubbling memory solution.

    And is memory solution a precursor to memory foam mattresses?

  109. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:04 am [Reply]

    @Dale (#106): That would be an awesome turn of events.

    Officer Trout: Turtle eggs! We have to arrest you!

    Marlin: Yeah, can you believe this guy? He comes in pretending to be a journalist, and he sneaks around my island for 3 days digging up the eggs of endangered turtles!

    Trail: I’m not the villain! It’s Marlin!

    Marlin: Officer Trout and I go way back. We went to school together. He never saw me doing any of that stuff that you’re alleging. Ask my girlfriend, Jessica. If I’d been poaching these eggs for all this time, you’d think she’d have known! You, Trail, scooped up those eggs and broke into my house!

  110. Baka Gaijin
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:07 am [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#102): I laughed at the “‘squishing’ turtle embryos flying out.” For some reason the phrase just tickles my brain. Maybe it’s the thought of it as the title to a punk-anarchic-klezmer song.

    @hogenmogen (#108): Long-form COTW contender!

  111. David
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:36 am [Reply]

    Josh,

    I’ve never commented before, but I just had to say you were on fire today. You had me laughing out loud in my seat. Thanks for all you do!

  112. Escape Zeppelin
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    I just realized why nobody’s complained about keeping a deer in a Manhattan apartment. Tommie finally snapped and has been nurturing a stray lawn ornament for weeks and is now driving it out to the country for medical treatment. The vet is going to patiently wrap the plastic critter in bandages to distract her until the nice men in white coats arrive to take her away. Margo meanwhile is pleased to have a newly empty bedroom for her sweater collection.

  113. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:41 am [Reply]

    Jumble-I think that’s Josh in the background of today’s Jumble.

  114. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:52 am [Reply]

    Funky:
    Hey, ya ever find something in the last place ya look?
    Not me, when I find something I keep on searchin’!

    Hahahahaha!

  115. LogopolisMike
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    A3G: I remember one time getting into a huge fight with [COMPANY REDACTED] because they swore I smoked in my rental car and were going to charge me an exorbitant cleaning fee, and even though I was a smoker, I had not actually smoked in the car and was actually quite proud that I’d driven the four-hour-trip-each-way to my grandfather’s funeral without smoking even though I was sad and it was extended-family-stressful and I was unable to stop as often as I would have liked. I felt it was very, very necessary to make all of these points as I was trying to get out of the cleaning fee, and the rental car representative did not care at all, which made me all the more emotional, and the rental care rep still did not care.

    I wish I’d had that freak out about deer feces.

  116. Baka Gaijin
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:56 am [Reply]

    @Escape Zeppelin (#112): COTW contender! Plastic deer, sanitarium. Genius!

  117. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:58 am [Reply]

    A3G: Yeah, just throw in that little dig at non Manhattanites, why don’t you. Oh you know those old towns upstate! Them and their unpaved roads. So quaint! I bet there’s even a milkman and a dog catcher around.

  118. hogenmogen
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:04 pm [Reply]

    @Aggie Mack (#11): That’s a great quote. A triple negative IS an actual denial.

  119. Odie Odo
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:05 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#113): I think that’s Josh in the background of today’s Jumble.

    Maybe, maybe not. I think Josh Fruhlinger Les Moore’s wife encouraged him to be a stand-up comedian just to get him out of the house.

  120. Valla Dia, Mate of Ulysses Paxton
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:11 pm [Reply]

    @Barbarian Princess of Mars (#64):

    Wow, those brass bikinis — I hear you, sister! Even as a younger and less (ahem) zaftig young lady

    http://tinyurl.com/lj6jkcr

    I got so tired of dieting to stay able to get into them that I stupidly resorted to surgery. I’d heard about this “diet doctor” named Ras Thavas who advertised that he could arrange for his clients to fit into any size they wished, and I gave it a try. Was I p.o.ed when I found out the secret was brain transplants, and I woke up in the body of a skinny old hag!

    Still, I eventually got better — and if I hadn’t gone in for the process (I had a coupon, fortunately, so I wasn’t out much), I might never have met Ulyssy. So I decided not to sue after all. But, girlfriend, you can just image how I dissed the doc on Yelp!

  121. Shrug
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:16 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#80):

    “It’s funny because they have absolutely nothing in common except the ALLEGED desire to have sex with one another.”

    FIFY.

  122. But What Do I Know?
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:18 pm [Reply]

    SM — So the choice is between dying a painful, horrible death or mussing the hair of the guy who’s trying to kill you, and Peter Parker is still trying to work out his response? Spidey Common Sense, not tingling!

  123. Bootsy
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    @the REAL Mark Trail (#102): sez:

    I also chose to not draw some of the eggs cracking open and “squishing” turtle embryos flying out

    No, thank you!

  124. Shrug
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:23 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#100):

    Especially since the miscreants will realize that, being turtle eggs, they will not be able to move very fast and thus evade and outwit them.

    “Day-yam, I’m tired to trying to steal chicken eggs and gettin’ outrunned by them — those birds is sneaky-fast, and they brung up their eggs to be the same way! I’m gonna switch over to chasin’ down turtle eggs, and snail eggs, and sloth eggs. . .”

  125. Dan
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:27 pm [Reply]

    I choose to believe that Mark Trail and Apartment 3-G are barreling towards the comic crossover of the century. After Tommie reaches the woods just in time for Lily to catch Marlin by biting the back of his pants and swinging him around, Tommie and Mark will stare at each other with dull, passionless expressions. Time will catch its breath, and the air itself will run thick with tedious, emotionless apathy. The sky will buckle and collapse in the space between their dead eyes and frozen smiles. It will consume them. It will consume the paper you read. It will consume you. Your world and everyone you’ve ever loved will be swallowed by the forces of entropy and indifference. Hello, Mark Trail, she’ll say. I enjoy your nature articles.

  126. Bootsy
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

    @Dan (#125):

    That gave me the shivers. Brrr!!

  127. Shrug
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    @aphthakid (#104):

    “I also like how, again, the author has completely forgotten that the D-Day invasion is supposed to be going on”

    I think Brooke ret-conned that a few days ago — didn’t Souris mumble something mentally to herself about how, along with all of her other problems, she suspected the invasion was probably going to start in the next couple of days?

    (Yes, I know a few months ago Brooke actually claimed it WAS in progress even as we watched — even though all we saw of it was Our Hero Bill, a cowardly (!) Allied medic, and one careless Axis soldier — but maybe that was just the final dress/tech rehersal. If so, I don’t think it’s ready for Broadway yet.)

  128. Odie Odo
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:35 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#1): Hemlock Holmes, Heap O’Calorie, and Manuel Tijuana Guadalajara Tampico “Go-Go” Gomez, Jr. were unavailable for comment…

    Dunno about Heap or Hemlock, but Go Go Gomez has been hired to be Grant Gustin’s stand-in on the new “Flash” television series.

  129. the REAL Mark Trail
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:35 pm [Reply]

    @Lorne (#105): I take that as a compliment

  130. Ian Beste
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:43 pm [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#85): Was his name Walter?

  131. Dood
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:44 pm [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Mark’s mighty punch literally separates Marlin from his sack. And his third panel exclamation — “Sea turtle eggs!” — is both a commentary on the weakness of Marlin’s said sad sack and the contents therein.

  132. TheDiva
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:47 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#127): More evidence for my theory that none of these people are in Normandy, but in some out-of-the-way corner of the European theater where they can play war without getting in the way of real adults doing the actual fighting. Kind of like sending the kids to run around in the backyard so you can get dinner ready in peace.

  133. Elk Meadow
    March 31st, 2014 at 12:47 pm [Reply]

    DT: He’s just bummed because he won’t have any say in the movie, let alone make a dime off of it.

    Luann: I wish this was another step to calling off the engagement….*sigh

    MW: Better get used to it, Iris. You’ve shown him where you keep your money, and Wilbur’s going to be keeping you like a pet. (“him” being both Tommy and Wilbur.)

  134. Écureuil Écumant
    March 31st, 2014 at 1:09 pm [Reply]

    @Joe (#99): It’d have to be pretty good to beat Afghani hash — and those dudes are landlocked.

  135. Écureuil Écumant
    March 31st, 2014 at 1:12 pm [Reply]

    MT: No, Mark, it’s worse than that! Those are baby Jackelrod balls, and if they never have the chance to hatch … well, the strip would have to start reusing old ones — and that would violate the most fundamental MT principle.

  136. Barsoom Buddy
    March 31st, 2014 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    @Valla Dia, Mate of Ulysses Paxton (#120): Actually, nowadays the “brass bikini” is less commonplace than the “brass pasties”, worn for (NSFW) minimal coverage or simply for (NSFW‘er) ornamentation.

  137. Calico
    March 31st, 2014 at 1:34 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#4):
    It’s sad, because they need certain conditions to hatch, and survival is always tough.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGoayx3Hvo4

  138. Hibbleton
    March 31st, 2014 at 1:49 pm [Reply]

    A3G: Over the last few days, that is certainly one unique automobile. What’s that I hear playing on the car radio?

    …I got it one piece at a time
    And it didn’t cost me a dime
    You’ll know it’s me when I come through your town
    I’m gonna ride around in style
    I’m gonna drive everybody wild
    ‘Cause I’ll have the only one there is around….

  139. aphthakid
    March 31st, 2014 at 1:52 pm [Reply]

    @Shrug (#127): Oh, he’s just all over the place. The Allies have invaded to the extent that they can pop in and grab a set of dog tags lying around to declare Bill dead and get Herr Jewels to England, but otherwise there isn’t a sign of it anywhere.

  140. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:02 pm [Reply]

    A3G-”Stay here, Lily. I don’t think these people are as sophisticated as us New Yorkers. They might consider you for eating and not for keeping as a pet.”

  141. The Silent Penultimate Panel
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    I’ve read enough Curious George books in my life to know what happens when you tell the wild animal you inexplicably keep as a pet to “wait here a minute, unsupervised, while I go do some small, inconsequential task that could easily be done with you accompanying me.” Looks like Tommie and Lily are in for a week of wacky misadventures!

  142. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:11 pm [Reply]

    Nancy: Happiness is… seeing Fritzi Ritz as Miss Peach, Cute Chick or Miz Ma’m’selle Hepzibah.

  143. tallyHO
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:13 pm [Reply]

    hmmm.
    I tried to post one comment on Mark Trail and the magical bag of Silly Putty packages and I got this message:

    “You are posting comments too quickly. Slow down.”

    I probably won’t get it again since I’m pointing out the problem when I go to click POST

  144. tallyHO
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:14 pm [Reply]

    @Écureuil Écumant (#135):

    That’s hilarious!

    I envy the fact that you came up with it, too!

    Gadzooks!

  145. tallyHO
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:17 pm [Reply]

    @Arabella (#61):
    Drabble: And again we see the hazard of the cartoonist’s three-week lead time.

    Yup. He should have ran with that a couple of weeks ago.

  146. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:22 pm [Reply]

    Pickles: Dog phlegm is the gift that keeps on giving.

  147. Flippin Arkansas
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:22 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#66): I would KILL for this storyline to swerve into being about a chupacabra named Lily.

  148. Écureuil Écumant
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:26 pm [Reply]

    @tallyHO (#143): I get that sometimes too. It often seems to happen when I’ve clicked on the “Reply” button on someone else’s post, and then go to post my response. Mysterious, eh?

    BTW, I had to go check that I didn’t oversnarp a previous comment of yours re: MT. Faked me out of my sox.

  149. Odie Odo
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:30 pm [Reply]

    @Ebenezer Wasabi (#142): Miss Peach, Cute Chick, and Miz Ma’m’selle Hepzibah walk into a bar with their dates Hemlock Holmes, Heap O’Calorie, and Manuel Tijuana Guadalajara Tampico “Go-Go” Gomez, Junior…

  150. seismic-2
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:32 pm [Reply]

    A3G: I suspect Tommie’s telling the deer to stay in the car will be about as effective as Rusty’s directives to the otters.

  151. Avoiding the Madding Crowd
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    Chareth Cutestory
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:33 am [Reply]

    A3G: Nothing smarter than driving with a wild animal in the backseat and deciding not to wear a seatbelt.

    If I’m driving with a wild animal in the backseat, the last thing I want is a restraining device limiting my movements.

  152. Brett
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:37 pm [Reply]

    @hogenmogen (#103): Southpaws stand right foot forward (like a left handed batter) and can throw an upper cut with the right hand or a rear uppercut with the left hand. Southpaw/orthodox refers to how you stand rather than what punches you throw, but your stance also affects what you can throw.

  153. Avoiding the Madding Crowd
    March 31st, 2014 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    Jess
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:41 am [Reply]

    People who do sea turtle conservation (like me) dig up eggs after they’ve been laid and carry them in a bag to a corral where they rebury them and are able to monitor temperature and conditions. Then when they hatch, they release the babies safely into the water. This protects the eggs from scavengers and poachers.

    Then who feeds the scavengers?

  154. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 3:05 pm [Reply]

    Snuffy Smith-”I don’t know much about art but I know what I like and I don’t like this.”

    FW-”I’m lying. I have no idea what those issues are like. I don’t know much about comics. I just go through life talking out of my ass in an effort to sound important.”

  155. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 3:11 pm [Reply]

    MW-”Lunch is on me.” Literally. Wilbur is such a slob he ends up with most of his lunch on his clothes.

    MW-”Lunch is on me and I hope something else will be on me later.”

  156. Barbarian Princess of Mars
    March 31st, 2014 at 3:13 pm [Reply]

    @Valla Dia, Mate of Ulysses Paxton (#120): Wow, what horrific experience! Someone ought to write a book about it! I’m glad it worked out ok in the end.

  157. Barbarian Princess of Mars
    March 31st, 2014 at 3:38 pm [Reply]

    @Barsoom Buddy (#136): I had always hoped that the brass pasties would distract attention from my problem areas — hips, thighs, and (sigh) big ol’ tummy. But naw. So that’s why I got Fluffy there. I hear very little criticism anymore.

    // Mr. Frazetta tells me I should accept myself as I am. “You’re not really fat,” he said. “You’re just drawn that way.”

  158. ReFlex76
    March 31st, 2014 at 3:38 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#80): Nothing in common . . . other than:

    - Both being firefighters.

    - Working in the same fire company.

    - Concurrently training to become firefighters.

    - A love for cars.

    I mean, other than that . . .

  159. Majicou
    March 31st, 2014 at 3:59 pm [Reply]

    @Joe Blevins (#88): [snuff] Loweezy IS getting instructions from God. That’s why she’s wittering on about trivial nonsense, to distract Jughaid before she draws the sacrificial knife across his throat.

    @ReFlex76 (#158): That really makes it seem like their primary common interest is just things not being on fire.

  160. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:06 pm [Reply]

    Josh – Fists o’ Justice be damned! Mark is merely stabbing Marlin in the face with an ice pick, which has been clumsily removed in some markets, apparently including yours.

    Don’t know about sea turtle eggs, but I’ve seen turtles lay eggs a couple of times — once in our front yard — and (as others have mentioned) they’re softshell. The eggs, not the turtles. Why do I mention this, when others have already covered it? Because I’ve seen a turtle lay eggs in my yard, suckers!

    Insofar as regards sea turtles and their eggs, I just have to say that this music video is incredibly beautiful animation, and works with the song to pack a real punch. Warning: Not a laff-fest. You will most likely care about a lump of sand.

    I’m running way behind, so I’m skipping over everybody else who said anything worthwhile that I’m saying now.

  161. Anachrosaurus
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:07 pm [Reply]

    @Lydia (#3):
    “Sea turtle eggs are apparently a black market aphrodisiac.”

    I think someone’s already theorized that that sack of turtle eggs was en route to Santa Royale for Wilbur to make egg salad sandwiches out of. I’d say that this confirms it.

    (Ewww)

  162. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:08 pm [Reply]

    Count Weirdly is a scientific genius. He has his own personal holodeck. He has a time travel machine, and spacecraft. He has conducted genetic experiments with astonishing results. His achievements dwarf those of Newton, Einstein, and deGrasse Tyson. And yet he lights his castle dungeon with candles. What a traditionalist!

  163. Gary
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:11 pm [Reply]

    Nonsense, the deer can’t be on a leash… if it was on a leash, how could it manage to “accidentally” put the car in gear and drive off as soon as Tommie leaves the car? That’s what it desperately wants to do, you can see it in the deer’s eyes.

  164. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:20 pm [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#128): Dunno about Heap or Hemlock, but Go Go Gomez has been hired to be Grant Gustin’s stand-in on the new “Flash” television series.

    After joining Jenny Craig and undergoing sex reassignment surgery, Heap O’Calorie successfully auditioned for the part of Abigail “Tommie” Thompson in Apartment 3-G. (Unfortunately, O’Calorie’s Tommie still has “Uncle” Johnny Coon’s voice!)

  165. Will
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:20 pm [Reply]

    SFx: Another thought occurs to me: is the rat related to Reeky Rat?

  166. Hank G.
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:20 pm [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#80):

    Luann: It’s funny because they have absolutely nothing in common except the desire to have sex with one another.

    I’ve seen no evidence that they want to do that.

  167. demoncat_4
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:35 pm [Reply]

    mw i gave tommy the last of my cash wilbur hope it does not mean he is going back to his old habbits. plus forgot to go to the bank. has iris not heard of having a debit card or finding an atm. plus giving tommy cash is just helping him wind up back in his old ways. though wilbur will bail her out

  168. Majicou
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:36 pm [Reply]

    Order of the Stick is back! O frabjous day!

    // The mother dwarf doesn’t have a beard, though. I call shenanigans.

  169. TheDiva
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:41 pm [Reply]

    @Hank G. (#166): I concede the point. So really, they have absolutely nothing to build a marriage on, with the possible exception of working in the same place. Maybe this is their way of saving on the commute.

  170. TheDiva
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:42 pm [Reply]

    @Majicou (#168): On the other hand, Little Durkon has the cutest stubble.

  171. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:44 pm [Reply]

    @Ebenezer Wasabi (#164): Ahem. That should have been: “Uncle” Johnny Coons’ voice. (The placement of one punctuation mark changes everything!)

  172. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 4:55 pm [Reply]

    Ballard Street: I’ve said this before, but this is why ‘mudges need cool uniforms, or costumes, or something.

    // No brass bikinis, though. This isn’t Barsoom!

  173. Peanut Gallery
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:03 pm [Reply]

    The depictions of Josh in the Jumble are getting closer and closer to reality. The next one will be “The comics blogger said his frequent appearances in the Jumble were only a… BI MUG PIX”

  174. Peanut Gallery
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:25 pm [Reply]

    @Avoiding the Madding Crowd (#153): Ideally, you feed the poachers to the scavengers.

  175. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:26 pm [Reply]

    @SnickerDoodle (#107): Oh, it’s real. Used it myself*. AOL is Pluggerese for Internet. Of course, Dilbert, a strip for mostly high tech aware people, had an AOL address for many years. Of course, now Dilbert’s at gmail, like all the cool kids.

    // *My 2.5 seconds of fame was having Pluggers accept one of my emailed suggestions.

  176. Myrtle
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:28 pm [Reply]

    @The Silent Penultimate Panel (#141): “Looks like Tommie and Lily are in for a week of misadventures”

    If only!! If only the authors had put a fraction of the thought and creativity into this storyline that the posters here have. We have had to create our own zaniness; Bolle and Shulock have treated this as just an everyday matter-of-fact occurrence.

    This scenario had the potential for slapstick greatness to rival I Love Lucy or The Dick Van Dyke Show. It makes me wonder if they are just doing the comic for us at CC these days. I can’t imagine anyone besides us actually following the “plots.”

  177. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:29 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#174): Ideally, you feed the poachers to the scavengers.

    That would work well with Dr. Myers’ suggestion of using TCM pharmacist parts for aphrodisiacs.

  178. Alison
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:32 pm [Reply]

    “Mary Worth”: Oh dear, Iris has to pay a bill but she accidentally gave all her money to Tommy. Isn’t it lucky the infatuated slobby man is out with her today? This definitely seems like one of those “accidents” you do on purpose. The only thing that keeps me from being sure of that is, if iris keeps this up she will be in debt to Wilbur and who would ever want that? I’d rather be broke from the bill at “Jerrys” (was the Bum Boat full?) than be in debt to Wilbur Weston, especially since we all know he wouldn’t want it paid back in money, ew.

    I wonder how Dawn feels about all this. She is 19, and immature, so maybe she’s still at the teenager stage where their parents embarrass them just by existing. I like to think Dawn has already told her dad, “Ugh, dad, you’re embarrassing me by hitting on that pretty chick. She is out of your league.’

  179. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:37 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#177): Um. That should be CTM — Chinese Traditional Medicine.

    // I have the highest respect for Turner Classic Movies.

  180. seismic-2
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:41 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#173): Interestingly, whenever I attempt to solve the Jumble I usually wind up with an incoherent cluster of letters like “FRUHLINGER”.

  181. tallyHO
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:41 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#173):

    I hadn’t even bothered with the digital Jumble in months because it became too much pressure. My timing started to slip.

    I just did today’s in 37 seconds. That’s not a boast as much it is actually puzzling. That’s mainly because to even have a timer on it is frustrating. The timer starts instantly and you still have to read the cartoon to figure out the last part.

    But, I’m gonna continue to avoid the Jumble (sorry Jumble Dude). It’s still too much pressure. I feel if it takes longer than 1 minute and a-half to solve one, my brain is slipping. If I can’t figure out the puzzle without hints, I’ve slipped into dumbness—sheer stupidity. So avoiding that puzzle is the best solution.

  182. Borborygmy
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:58 pm [Reply]

    @Barsoom Buddy (#136): I wish the fantasy comic publishers would just cut to the chase, and put out “Brass Bikini Girls of Mars”. I’d buy it.

  183. Peanut Gallery
    March 31st, 2014 at 5:59 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#180): Ha ha! That could give you a bad case of HERRING FLU.

    Chinese Traditional Medicine is supposed to be good for that.

  184. Anonymous
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:03 pm [Reply]

    SFx: Turn it upside down. Just — turn it upside down. Or, as has been suggested, throw it out the window, but then it could always be thrown back in again, so — turn it upside down.

  185. Frank Lee Meidere
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:08 pm [Reply]

    I seem to be having an identity crisis. That “Anonymous” was me. Or maybe somebody else. We’re just not sure.

  186. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:27 pm [Reply]

    Null – Wow! I had no idea this comic was available online. Stumbled over by accident; now bookmarked and following, and I particularly recommend it to all my fellow mudges as an antidote to the sometimes vacuous product that seems to fill the comics page.

  187. Borborygmy
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:32 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): Effulgent! It matches perfectly with the music in my head!

    // How do they do that?

  188. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:33 pm [Reply]

    @Barsoom Buddy (#136):

    Your nom de plume comes awfully close to Helen (hic!) Clark’s fark.com name: “Barroom Biddy”!

  189. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:44 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): “Null” must be some sort of default. At least it’s what I get whenever I try to access Bill Bettwy’s “Take It From The Tinkersons.”

  190. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:44 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): Jeepers! Check the bazooms on that brass bikini babe in yesterday’s Null! I guess the censors weren’t looking, heh heh!

  191. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:44 pm [Reply]

    MT: “Or maybe they’re just Mentos. Well, guess there’s only one way to find out.”

    A3G: We’ve secretly replaced Tommie’s unadvisable pet fawn with a stuffed Chihuahua. Let’s see how long it takes her to notice.

  192. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:46 pm [Reply]

    MW: Jerry’s Sandwich Shop. We make your sandwich just the way we like it. Even if it includes ungodly amounts of mayo.

    FW: John’s lunchtime slice is the least appetizing pizza I’ve ever seen, and I’m not excepting road pizza.

    9CL: “Was the fuck are ve supposed to be looking at. Is this some kind of artistic statement. I suppose ve are too unrefined to appreciate it.”

    GA: Skeezix continues to demonstrate that he’s never heard of reverse psychology, or any kind of psychology, or playing it cool.

    BB: Well, there’s being a lazy lout, then there’s buying new outfits just to goldbrick in.

    H&L: Lois fished for compliments from her daughter while posing seductively in a black slip. For the love of all that’s holy, let’s move on.

    Phantom: Wambesiland? It’s not the place it used to be. Their brainwashing and behavior mods have really gone downhill since old Walt Wambesi died.

    6C: Why did the vulture cross the road? Because it was still hungry after picking over the decaying remains of the chicken.

    DtM: Jon Hamm IS Copyright-Man!

    S-M: Let me guess. Wait for someone else to deal with the problem for you, then go home to watch Access Hollywood. Am I close?

  193. A. Smirch Unheeded, Archdeacon
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:48 pm [Reply]

    I like how last Sunday’s “Null” essentially restated Camus’ Resistance, Rebellian, and Death, in dactylic pentameter. And somebody published ukulele tabs in the comments!

  194. Borborygmy
    March 31st, 2014 at 6:53 pm [Reply]

    Luve the “Null”! It’s like “Phantom”, meets “Heaven’s Love Thrift Shop”, meets “Henry”, meets “Prince Valiant”, meets “Cathy”, meets “They’ll Do It Every Time”. Brilliant.

  195. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:02 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): Is Null the comic strip done by Harry Bliss? That’s what comes up for me at that link. It runs in the Boston Globe as “Bliss”.

  196. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:04 pm [Reply]

    @Frank Lee Meidere (#185): Obviously your computer took a few deep whiffs of Count Weirdly’s memory erasing potion.

  197. Albert Camus
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:05 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#195): No, grasshopper. “Null” is all comic strips, and no comic strips. It is one hand clapping, and a jackboot on the face of humanity, forever. It is what it isn’t, and it is not what it is.

  198. Casey, Crime Photographer
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:05 pm [Reply]

    @Borborygmy (#194):

    Glad you like it. I’ve been a fan of A.E. van Vogt for years and years:

    http://jacketupload.macmillanusa.com/jackets/high_res/jpgs/9780765300973.jpg

  199. Dennis Jimenez
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:06 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#179): I get high on movies – especially Patrick Swayze – Road House – Ghost – Red Dawn – Dirty Dancing….

  200. Casey, Crime Photographer
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:11 pm [Reply]

    @Dennis Jimenez (#199):

    Interesting. I’ve been a fan of Patrick’s father John Cameron Swayze for years and years:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6EK9KWHjvfM

  201. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:11 pm [Reply]

    @Jim in Wisc. (#46):

    Meddlin’ Mary: Of course, Wilbur’s idea of a romantic lunch with his girlfriend is at a sandwich shop.

    Wait, have they actually started dating again? Okay, that would explain why Tommie is ready to dive headfirst off the wagon.

  202. Borborygmy
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:13 pm [Reply]

    @Casey, Crime Photographer (#198): Minced Oath! That has to be one of the most tepid, faint praise jacket blurbs I’ve ever seen! “Fine for addicts of science fiction.” — The New Yorker.

    It’s ok, if you can’t help yourself. Imagine a wine review: “Ok, if you’re an alcoholic.”

  203. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:13 pm [Reply]

    @Albert Camus (#197): Ah, on second glance I see that you are correct. My humble apologies.

  204. Odie Odo
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:20 pm [Reply]

    @Borborygmy (#202):

    Playboy magazine: “Ok, if you like nude airbrushed women.”

  205. Peanut Gallery
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:23 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): Meh. The strip’s gotten all fancy lately. I liked it better when they had it pared down to just the essentials.

  206. Borborygmy
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:24 pm [Reply]

    @Odie Odo (#204): They’re ok, but I like fierce, plump Frazetta barbarian princesses better.

  207. Peanut Gallery
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:26 pm [Reply]

    @Ebenezer Wasabi (#189): To paraphrase Sherlock Holmes, “That is what you may expect to see when you follow Take It From The Tinkersons.”

  208. Peanut Gallery
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:36 pm [Reply]

    @Borborygmy (#194): Well, that’s fine, as long as you don’t bow down and worship it.

    (That critter on the left looks like it could be one of Bob Weber, Jr.’s creations!)

  209. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:40 pm [Reply]

    @Peanut Gallery (#208): Golly, but I do love Ace Doubles! Grew up on them, and permanently boggled my wits.

  210. Hank G.
    March 31st, 2014 at 7:52 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#175):

    // *My 2.5 seconds of fame was having Pluggers accept one of my emailed suggestions.

    Was it the “Pluggers are old and poor” one? I think I saw it.

  211. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    @Hank G. (#210): Now, that’s just mean, albeit true. Here it is, I don’t mind reposting it.

  212. Uncle Lumpy
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:05 pm [Reply]

    @Hank G. (#210):

    I think it was “Pluggers are old and fat.” Broke new ground.

  213. Calico
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:06 pm [Reply]

    @Liam (#9):

    I thought it was a bagful of those 25 cents each bubble gum balls, pre-coloring.
    “Oh no! My gumballs!”
    (Old pseudo-reference via comicbooth.com)

  214. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:20 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#212): No, really, I don’t look like that. The camera adds eighty pounds.

  215. Liam
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:32 pm [Reply]

    MT-I don’t understand what is going on. Is this considered foreplay? Are Mark and Marlin now a couple?

  216. Charles Dickens
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:34 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): I shall take legal action against the unauthorized comic-strip serialization of the adventures of Little Null. Have they reached the part where she is evicted from the Curiosity Shop?

  217. Congo Bill Bailey
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:44 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186):

    “Null and Void” were like the Jerry Lewis/Dean Martin of comic books until they broke up…

    http://img1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20081228144003/marvel_dc/images/2/24/World%27s_Finest_Comics_304.jpg

  218. Fashion Police
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:48 pm [Reply]

    @Baka Gaijin (#94):
    The blood oranges are, as ever, exquisite.

  219. Ursula
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:57 pm [Reply]

    @Mibbitmaker (#24): All of these great Lily imaginings make me think of a great Pink Martini song about a Lilly…
    http://www.absolutelyrics.com/lyrics/view/pink_martini/lilly

  220. seismic-2
    March 31st, 2014 at 8:58 pm [Reply]

    @Congo Bill Bailey (#217): I thought these guys were the Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis of comic books.

  221. Ebenezer Wasabi
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:10 pm [Reply]

    @Charles Dickens (#216):

    Loved your work on the “I’m Dickens, He’s Fenster” TV series.

    @seismic-2 (#220):

    Wait, I thought Super-Hip and Harvard-Harvard were the Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis of comic books.

  222. [Old Man] Muffaroo
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:11 pm [Reply]

    What I like about NULL is its fractal nature: peel back a layer, and another, and another, and it’s still completely perfect. Also, tits.

  223. yaoi huntress earth
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:12 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#186): This is a rather nice comic, thanks for suggesting it. Today’s was rather touching.

  224. Meg
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:23 pm [Reply]

    Actually, Jughaid may be on to something– if French fry Jenga isn’t already a thing, it should be.

  225. Georg Cantor
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:27 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#222): Null, schmull. The collected set of those comic strips might as well not exist, once I negotiate the deal with King Features for my own comic strip version of The Continuum Hypothesis. It will be serialized in uncountably infinite many episodes, in which the action moves all the way from early one morning to later that same day. Sort of like Judge Parker.

  226. lurkerman
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:28 pm [Reply]

    Little known fact: “sea turtle eggs” are actually a code word from Mark Trail’s youth for “marbles.” His parents didn’t cotton to ANY rapscallion games taking dear Mark away from their nature-learning at the cult compound of Nature-Learin’, Fisticuffin’, and Really Bad Drawin’, so Mark and his two buddies had to improvise names for their Dobberts and such when they played them in secret late on Saturday nights. Poor Mark still shed’s a tear when he remembers what the cult did do his two friends when he ratted them out to save his own skin. He can never look at mica and toothpaste the same way.

  227. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:29 pm [Reply]

    @[Old Man] Muffaroo (#222): For me, being an Internet reverend, it’s the deep spirituality. Also large, firm, jauntily bouncing buttocks.

  228. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:33 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#28):

    If your rhino horn is stiff for more then four hours, please consult your witch doctor.

  229. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:39 pm [Reply]

    @Georg Cantor (#225): You talk big, mister. Show us the buttocks!

  230. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:41 pm [Reply]

    I think there’s a trend now of using only locally produced aphrodisiacs.

  231. Elk Meadow
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:43 pm [Reply]

    Luann: Liz/Anthony 2.0.

  232. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:44 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#230): Oh, I’ve heard of that. Locawhore?

  233. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:52 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#232):

    Try the new improved Whoreomatic™.

    Can’t get more local than that.

  234. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 9:55 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#233): New? Improved? I’ll have to see what Consumer Reports has to say.

  235. Hank G.
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:02 pm [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#212): I’m wishing that they had a Mark Trail category:

    “You’re Mark Trail if you commit multiple felonies to help convict someone of a misdemeanor.”

    “You’re Mark Trail if you get suspicious if someone doesn’t drop whatever they are doing to help you.”

    “You’re Mark Trail if you love the outdoors even though everyone you meet in the woods is a criminal.”

  236. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:05 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#234):

    Hey! And “local” can be fun for the whole family!

  237. Frank Lee Meidere
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:27 pm [Reply]

    @Artist formerly known as Ben (#196): That’s because it stupidly tried sealing the jar with candle wax rather than turning it upside down!

  238. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:36 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#236): The Aristocrats!

  239. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:45 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#238):

    And you’re right. No one can tell that story like Gilbert Gottfried.

    (Notice I didn’t link the story. Hearing it once was quite enough.)

  240. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:49 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#239): Odd isn’t it? I can’t abide the man otherwise. But it is clear as the azure skies of deepest summer, that he was born for this task, to tell this tale, and I won’t link to it either.

  241. greghousesgf
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:53 pm [Reply]

    Dennis the Menace—It’s a bloody miracle! he’s watching a TV show about a superhero instead of cowboys!

  242. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:56 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#240):

    I generally don’t care much for him either but he once did a clean bit that was very funny about Bob Dylan going in to get a haircut from Floyd the Barber. Think about those two voices interacting with each other. Too bad I couldn’t find a link to the bit.

  243. Hank G.
    March 31st, 2014 at 10:57 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#211): Oh, “Pluggers are old and cheap”. That’s different, because sometimes Pluggers are cheap for other reason than being poor.

  244. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:03 pm [Reply]

    160 Muffaroo (since I guess “reply” isn’t working for me tonight): Wow. Just wow. That video was astonishing.

  245. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:04 pm [Reply]

    @bourbon babe, unbuckled (#244):

    Oh, gosh, bourbon babe. Did you break the internet again?

  246. seismic-2
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:05 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#239): The Gilbert Gottfried version of that joke has 988,000 views on YouTube. Surely this is why the Internet was invented.

  247. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:09 pm [Reply]

    @Hank G. (#243): Oh. Frugality is a virtue, surely. The strip was based on personal experience. The book in question was Jay Maeder’s bio of the great detective. Excellent, and still available for a penny. You’ll have to buy $24.99 worth of other stuff, though, to get free shipping.

  248. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:12 pm [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#246): But I see you didn’t link, either. Kind of a once in a lifetime thing.

  249. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:14 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#247):

    Buy 2500 copies. Problem solved.

    Give them away at Christmas, Bar Mitzvahs and Ramadan festivities. You’ll be the life of the party.

  250. Nehemiah Scudder
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:17 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#249): Truly, you have a dizzying intellect.

  251. bourbon babe, unbuckled
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:21 pm [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#245): Apparently not permanently.

  252. Sequitur
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:21 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#250):

    Funny. HAMMY THE SQUIRREL! told me the same thing.

  253. Droopy Says
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:26 pm [Reply]

    A Fool For All Seasons: Parker, this “chase” has already dragged out too long. Let Jameson catch you and beat you to a pulp. Think of all the time you can spend lying in a hospital bed, watching TV!

    Family Circus: Poor Bil, every time he sees a picture of a child, he thinks of what he spawned and can barely hide his regrets.

    FW: Batiuk, your witticisms would be more entertaining if you didn’t present only half of them.

    Jugheaded Parker: Rancid and Flaccid Gardia will attack tonight? So Abbott has at least six more months to live? Good, their helicopter will have enough time to play the entire Ring cycle when they attack.

    Mark Trail: TRMT, let me be the first to complain congratulate you on taking over today! I hope Mr. Elrod has a long and happy retirement.

    Fool Man Chu: Explain to me again, O Ghost, how you differ from the typical supervillain.

    Pluggers could stretch out the Christmas stamps into mid-summer if they’d stop licking them.

    Rex Morgan, Minus Details: You’d think a doctor could afford some background with his breakfast.

  254. Hank G.
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:43 pm [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#247):

    Oh. Frugality is a virtue, surely. The strip was based on personal experience. The book in question was Jay Maeder’s bio of the great detective. Excellent, and still available for a penny. You’ll have to buy $24.99 worth of other stuff, though, to get free shipping.

    I’m frugal. You’re cheap. :-)

    I’ve been a Amazon Prime member for a couple of years now, so I can’t check, but I seem to remember that stuff bought on Amazon from third parties had shipping charges even if you bought enough to qualify for free shipping on Amazon stuff.

  255. seismic-2
    March 31st, 2014 at 11:50 pm [Reply]

    @Hank G. (#254): In most cases. However, some third-party items are stocked in Amazon’s own warehouses and qualify for two-day shipping, as I recall.

    I haven’t checked about Starbuck Jones comic books or Turkish garage-door openers.

  256. Sequitur
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:03 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#255):

    The problem with those Turkish garage door openers is I can never remember whether to order it from Istanbul or Constantinople.

  257. bats :[
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:04 am [Reply]

  258. Sequitur
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:07 am [Reply]

    @bats :[ (#257):

    Er, bats :[? Why is Mark force-feeding Marlin moth balls?

  259. Albert
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:13 am [Reply]

    @Sequitur (#256): Pluggers order them from Byzantium.

  260. Dale
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:24 am [Reply]

    MARK TRAIL

    WHY does Mark think he has to catch Marlin?
    Call the cops and stay with the evidence. Steal a camera and take some pictures.

    Why didn’t Mark want Jessica to see the confrontation?
    Why did he tell her to wait on the dock instead of in the house?
    Surely Marlin has a gun in his boat.

  261. Majicou
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:29 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#250): Just wait ’til I get going! Where was I?

  262. Poteet
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:31 am [Reply]

    @Jess (#13): Thank you!

  263. Poteet
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:34 am [Reply]

    MT: Dang it, now we’ll never find out what kinds of game animals he was bringing people to the island to hunt. I really wanted to know. Come back, Marlin, I gotta coupla questions for you!

  264. Poteet
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:43 am [Reply]

    MW: Wilbur has made courting Iris his fulltime occupation, and this is STILL the best he can do. And Iris has Tommy for a son, Mary for a friend, and Wilbur as a suitor. I’m not sure which of them should commit suicide first.

  265. Poteet
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:44 am [Reply]

    MT: Much as I look forward to the forthcoming Puncharama, I wish someone would salvage the turtle eggs and rebury them and get some baby turtles out of this debacle.

  266. Poteet
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:46 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#25): Or CTM practitioners could be hunted down and harpooned for science. Like whales.

  267. Majicou
    April 1st, 2014 at 12:58 am [Reply]

    @Georg Cantor (#225): You know damned well King Features won’t print anything that can’t be diagonalized with the natural numbers.

  268. Nehemiah Scudder
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:09 am [Reply]

    @Albert (#259): Heh! There is no country for old men.

  269. Nehemiah Scudder
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:10 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#266): Exactly!

  270. Huckleberry Fink
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:11 am [Reply]

    Marvin: Four years after the Gulf Oil Spill, Marvin’s father is still trying to con BP’s lawyers into settling with him. Unfortunately, Jeff is so dumb that he claims to have gotten oiled up fishing in “Lake Wobegon.”

  271. Borborygmy
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:22 am [Reply]

    @Barbarian Princess of Mars (#157): Oh come on. Be adult. That “here comes Princess Thunder Thighs” and “Princess Jelly Belly” stuff, was just in good fun!

    // No, Fluffy, no! Aaaggh!

  272. Marthra
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:28 am [Reply]

    Lu-bland Uh huh, a whole year engaged without ever planning the wedding. That sure is a thing that happens in real life. Am I really supposed to believe these freaks LOVE each other?

    Heathcliff Delightful! No way in hell Heathcliff could actually catch the ball based on its size and trajectory, but he’s showing his disdain for sit-ups by exercising his arms!

  273. Uncle Lumpy
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:28 am [Reply]

    Funny about the Aristocrats joke – the less tolerable a comedian, the better they do that joke. Gilbert Gottfried is the penultimate, but Sarah Silverman is the endpoint.

  274. José Jiménez
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:30 am [Reply]

    @Huckleberry Fink (#270):

    Marvin’s mother filed for divorce after she caught Jeff getting oiled up to fish in “Lake Victoria.”

  275. Marthra
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:33 am [Reply]

    @Marthra (#272): if I may be so BOLD…. :P

  276. walt d
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:40 am [Reply]

    @TheDiva (#80): FW: I for one would find nattering on about stamps more interesting than about superheroes, but I fear I would be in a small minority. Stamps after all can be beautiful in design and interesting in story, neither of which I find true in superhero comics. How come none of these comic book nuts are into Crumb and his associates?

  277. José Jiménez
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:40 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#220): That’s some nice art by Howie Post.

    @Marthra (#272): Old King Bold was a merry old soul. You ARE a dude, right?

  278. Nehemiah Scudder
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:41 am [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#273): The test of any scientific theory is whether or not it’s falsifiable. First, imagine an obnoxious comedian, Don Rickles, say, doing the Aristocrats. Got it? Now imagine a fairly bland comedian, Bob Newhart, doing it.

    You may be on to something.

    // I’d still like to hear Bob Newhart try.

  279. Marthra
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:49 am [Reply]

    @José Jiménez (#277): Nope. Call me Queen HTML-unsavvy!

  280. Dale
    April 1st, 2014 at 1:55 am [Reply]

    @Poteet (#263):

    MARK TRAIL

    I asked some of those questions. Is the “small” island large enough to support wild game? Does Marlin bring the game in, feed it and keep it penned until the hunters arrive? They hunt at night? Wouldn’t Jessica hear the shots?
    And, a frame house is not good at stopping large caliber rifle bullets.

  281. walt d
    April 1st, 2014 at 2:17 am [Reply]

    RMMD: And the board of directors, and the customers? Are they anxious about it, seeing that the head guy and his newly designated asst. head guy are kicking back in Europe, rather than attending to business?

    RMMD: And if that doesn’t help, we’ve heard about this fantastic herbalist that has a little shop in an obscure valley in Romania.

  282. Gladly, the cross-eyed bear
    April 1st, 2014 at 3:11 am [Reply]

    MW: Iris grasps Wilbur’s hand, so he’s gotten about 1/3 of the way to first base. This is the farthest Wilbur has gotten with any female in 15 years. His heart swells feebly with joy, congested as it is with traces of the literally gallons of mayonnaise Wilbur has wolfed down over the years.

  283. seismic-2
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:21 am [Reply]

    @Uncle Lumpy (#273), @Nehemiah Scudder (#278): A white-bread, vanilla, bland, family-friendly, totally dull, sitcom star like Bob Saget?

  284. Droopy Says
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:28 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#283): No, the requirements specify a comedian. On the other hand, after seeing part of Gilbert Gottfried’s performance, that may not be a critical issue.

  285. hogenmogen
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:31 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tommie’s car was white a few days ago. It looked sorta like a 1940s era Desoto or something. Now it’s blue and its giving me a 1960s Ford vibe.

    How does one “kick a car to ribbons” anyway?

  286. hogenmogen
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:46 am [Reply]

    @walt d (#281): That’s an interesting thought. When a CEO goes from very hands-on, micromanaging to “ok, you guys take care of things now” virtually overnight, it doesn’t go well.

    I had a boss who insisted that everything gets run through him to finalize. He was in the National Guard. So there was a 2 week Guard training followed by a week of his personal vacation followed by a disaster that called up the Guard for a week. Corporate office kept calling to find out why we hadn’t done anything in a month.

    I had a boss that actively prevented cross-training. For example, a guy to train us on the computer system came for a week. The boss occupied 4 days one-on-one training. We got 2 hours in a classroom. He thought that if no one knew how to function without him, he’d never be fired. He didn’t get fired. He quit. And he was good at what he did, because we didn’t function without him.

    So Milton goes from negotiating the price of the screws used to assemble his satellite to “I just learned how to make flambé!” and “Greetings from Amsterdam” postcards. Is that going to work?

  287. hogenmogen
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:50 am [Reply]

    MT: Wha?? There are bubbles coming from Marlin’s head. Are we supposed to know.. this means… what? We know what he’s thinking? Why does he not simply say out loud his every thought? Has Mark struck him mute? I DON’T GET THIS!

  288. Peanut Gallery
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:53 am [Reply]

    @Georg Cantor (#225): I tried to read your serial comic, but it’s too disconnected.

  289. hogenmogen
    April 1st, 2014 at 6:58 am [Reply]

    Skunky:
    See? I’m not just deliberately lowballing him to take advantage of his domestic situation and score a windfall profit for myself, I’m really playing a noble game to help a fellow comics lover… who wants to use this subterfuge as a way of lying to his wife. Wow, I just realized; either way I’m an asshole!

  290. seismic-2
    April 1st, 2014 at 7:02 am [Reply]

    @Nehemiah Scudder (#278): Bob Newhart? Now I’m imagining that joke as a monologue told in the form of a phone call, from the Hollywood producer’s side.

    My brain is now ruined, for the rest of the day.

  291. Peanut Gallery
    April 1st, 2014 at 7:07 am [Reply]

    @seismic-2 (#290): That’s what I pictured too! He could even make it almost clean, since he’d be reacting to the description and leaving a lot of the details to the audience’s imagination.

    “Well, yes, I– I imagine it is hard to find replacement goats.
    Uh huh. Uh huh.
    Well maybe if you didn’t — you know — if you weren’t quite so rough with the goats in the first place…
    So, uh, what– what d’you call your act?
    Uh huh. The– the aristocrats?”

  292. CanuckDownSouth
    April 1st, 2014 at 7:10 am [Reply]

    MW: Wilbur needs to quit half his job in order to occasionally go out for sandwiches, and told Iris that he was scaling back for personal reasons. Iris probably thinks he has issues and pities / sympathizes. Considering that he can’t organize getting out the door for lunch unless he’s working part-time, I think she may be right about his mental health.

    Luann: They could have gone with strip-time being ever so much slower that realtime, but if it’s dumb and/or infantilizes the adult characters, guess which option Evans will pick?

  293. Naumstrosity
    April 1st, 2014 at 9:37 am [Reply]

    We’re about to find out the deer is a hallucination of Tommie’s that her well-meaning caretakers tried to indulge before Tommie snapped, killed everyone, and drove off alone into the woods talking to herself, aren’t we?

  294. Bruce Arthurs
    April 2nd, 2014 at 4:30 am [Reply]

    A3G: Lily’s eyes glazed over as she saw a vision of her forthcoming death in a hot car with the windows rolled up.

  295. Danonymous
    April 2nd, 2014 at 9:04 am [Reply]

    This is the greatest Mark Trail ever. It’s even better without any context. I just want a poster size print to hang on my wall. When people ask, I can say, ‘this is what Mark Trail is all about.’

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