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The real reason people run for judge: REVEALED

Beetle Bailey, 2/21/09

I know attempting to piece together what’s going in any particular Beetle Bailey is a fool’s errand, but what I’m getting — and please do correct me if I’m wrong — is that the General has gotten into some kind of fender-bender (with who? with what?), which has ruffled or shaken up his wife somehow (but not him?), and all he cares about his is car, and his wife is devastated by his indifference. Am I right? Because that’s … that’s pretty depressing. I hope I’m not right.

Marvin, 2/21/09

Marvin alone among comic strips dares to grapple with the profound social effects of today’s economic turmoil, as the evaporation of his grandparents’ stock portfolio has forced them to move in with Marvin and his parents. This has opened up rich new opportunities for hard-hitting original storylines. For instance, while usually two photocopies of the same drawing of Marvin would be open-mouthedly thought-ballooning a terrible unoriginal joke to his dog Bitsy, today two photocopies of the same drawing of Marvin are open-mouthedly thought-ballooning a terrible unoriginal joke to his grandparents’ dog Junior.

Judge Parker, 2/21/09

“Well hello, your honor! My breasts and I were just in the neighborhood … and we’ve arrived just in time for the couch-orgy, I see!”

67 responses to “The real reason people run for judge: REVEALED”

  1. monsieurjohn
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:02 pm [Reply]

    Junior is one pissed-off looking mutt.

  2. Poteet
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:02 pm [Reply]

    As Sunday’s strip made very clear, April’s ass has also arrived. And what an arrival.

  3. Jamus The Bartender
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:03 pm [Reply]

    ” Blow will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no blow”
    —Cassandra Cat

  4. Rachel211
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:06 pm [Reply]

    By the way they are dressed, I’m starting to think that all the women in Judge Parker are hookers who have get out of jail free cards as long as they stick around and give some lovin to all these boring lawyers and judges. Man, I think I’d rather go to jail.

  5. troy macgregor
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    I think General Halftrack’s wife is more devasted for having to look at his ass in the second panel and wondering how the hell both his legs join into his pelvis at a side angle.

  6. christian
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    isn’t that how the world actually works?

  7. 150
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    I really identify with Junior. That’s the exact face I make every time Marvin talks.

  8. Shlomo
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:13 pm [Reply]

    If the General’s wife, gave General Halfass a wedgie for his moronic comments in panel 2, I would consider reading this comic more often.

  9. Lisa
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:14 pm [Reply]

    Is anyone else having trouble bringing up the Wash Post comics today? I can’t read the Sundays for several of my strips… Waah!

  10. Black Drazon
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:21 pm [Reply]

    The General’s wife really does mean it literally. Halftrack doesn’t give the slightest care for the rest of the car, just the grille. It’s his oldest friend, his best friend, and he hacked it off one car and has been soldering it onto the others for the last fifty years. But at least it hasn’t reached the point that worrying about it causes his hair to suddenly double in length and fall across his face. Or in his case, back across his head.

  11. Winky's Spleen
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:21 pm [Reply]

    Hey, you know how our moms always used to warn us that if we keep making faces, they’d freeze that way? I guess that’s what happened to Marvin.

  12. Joe Blevins
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:22 pm [Reply]

    BB: Mrs. Halftrack really must’ve been shaken up in the accident. Her Spider-Man t-shirt is all wrinkled. Luckily, her black vinyl micro-miniskirt appears unharmed.

    JP: Nice of April’s breasts to move out of the way of that word balloon. Meanwhile, Randy’s not even pretending not to look at them. I sort of admire that honesty.

  13. Uncle Lumpy
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:22 pm [Reply]

    Josh knows the names of Marvin’s dog and Marvin’s grandparents’ dog. Heavy hangs the head that reads the comics so we don’t have to.

  14. Islamorada Girl
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:24 pm [Reply]

    BB: I think what’s going on here is that Mrs. Halftrack dented the car. You know, those women drivers! Haw, haw, haw.
    Well, I’m sure it was funny 50 years ago when it first ran.
    Nope.Women driver jokes were stupid even back then.

  15. Steph
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:24 pm [Reply]

    I think the idea is supposed to be that MRS. Halftrack had the accident while out on her own, and is upset because, on telling her husband of the incident, he shows more concern for the car than for her. This is funny because WOMEN DRIVERS, HAW! AIN’T IT THE TRUTH, FELLOW EIGHTY-YEAR OLD MEN?

  16. Steph
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:25 pm [Reply]

    I guess great minds “HAW” alike.

  17. Kibo
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:33 pm [Reply]

    Those two drawings of Marvin aren’t exactly alike — you should be able to spot the differences even if you are not sly like fox. Marvin’s just experimenting with new ways of irritating his parents above and beyond constant mood swings. Here, he’s made an angry face until it froze that way (thanks to a little help from Krazy Glue.) This way, he can still have his mood swings, but he’ll look evil all the time, intimidating his parents even when he’s happy. And that’s what all kids want.

  18. Uncle Lumpy
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:34 pm [Reply]

    Judge Parker

    Whan that Aprill, with gigantic breest
    All unnanounced crashed randy Parker’s feast
    And stonned all menne within their licour drenched,
    But Randie — him by Nature unbewenched –
    To Aprill’s charms yet seemeth all but blinde,
    For he, all ken, be not the Marian kinde.

    Apologies to Angry Kem and, well, everybody.

  19. Crankenstank
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:35 pm [Reply]

    I say Marvin’s ready for ritalin. Who’s with me?

  20. zenvelo
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:44 pm [Reply]

    #3 Jamus, if you are referring to Sunday’s Funky Wankerfest, the correct quote from R. Crumb’s Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers is, “dope will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no dope.”

    I had a poster of that in my room forty years ago, my mother was not amused.

  21. bats :[
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:45 pm [Reply]

    Just in case: A thing of beauty is a joy forever.
    Several things of beauty is even better:

  22. Tlachtga
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:47 pm [Reply]

    JP: While this will probably be the most boring couch-orgy ever, it will also probably be the longest; no one will even take off a tie until sometime in June.

  23. Mister Beautiful
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:51 pm [Reply]

    #20zenvelo: Gilbert Shelton’s Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, and that was Freewheeling Franklin’s motto. You gotta love the funny papers for their originality. I take my wife out all the time, but she keeps finding her way back home. That cost of living sure is high.

  24. Mac
    February 22nd, 2009 at 8:51 pm [Reply]

    Of course, it’s when the dog started talking back to him that the future serial killer that is Marvin really got going. “Mood swings”, right.

  25. Stroker Ace
    February 22nd, 2009 at 9:07 pm [Reply]

    The new ‘Marvin: Moody Amputee’ is much funnier than the old ‘Marvin’.

  26. Lou Shoemaker
    February 22nd, 2009 at 9:19 pm [Reply]

    Uncle Lumpy: And apologies to Geoffrey Chaucer as well.

    Still, an impressive display of scholarship, mi lud!

  27. Muffaroo
    February 22nd, 2009 at 9:27 pm [Reply]

    Uncle Lumpy @18 – Inspired!

  28. Islamorada Girl
    February 22nd, 2009 at 9:42 pm [Reply]

    15: Steph HAW! How did that happen?

  29. sugarpie
    February 22nd, 2009 at 10:11 pm [Reply]

    bats :[ and Uncle Lumpy Haw, Haw, Haw, and I’m in awe! Wish I had more time these days to be on this site and comment. Thanks to Josh and everyone for this oasis.

  30. Chris
    February 22nd, 2009 at 10:13 pm [Reply]

    Okay, Uncle Lumpy, I bow in awe to your Chaucerian brilliance!

  31. Digger
    February 22nd, 2009 at 10:44 pm [Reply]

    If giving Marvin a good swift kick is wrong, then I don’t want to be right.

  32. Scott S.
    February 22nd, 2009 at 11:04 pm [Reply]

    Obviously the general hit his wife. Note the mussed up hair. He’d feel just as bad *if* she got dented (fortunately, she’s made of sturdier materials than his car).

  33. Johnny Law
    February 22nd, 2009 at 11:07 pm [Reply]

    Pretty sure Halftrack’s wife got into a fender bender with the General’s favorite car. The strip actually makes sense that way.

  34. Lisa
    February 22nd, 2009 at 11:32 pm [Reply]

    Nah, the old coot got in the wreck, and is more worried about the damage he did to his car than his wife….

  35. Dan
    February 22nd, 2009 at 11:49 pm [Reply]

    Correction on the creator of the Fabulous Freal Brothers. It was not cartoonist Robert Crumb . . . . but rather Gilbert Sheltin. Great info though, and thank you..

  36. Nekrotzar
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:20 am [Reply]

    Randy, April Bower’s breasts just arrived. The rest of her should be here in about 15 minutes.

    Hello your honor, my breasts were just in the neighborhood, so I decided to join them.

    Etc, etc.

  37. teddytoad
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:26 am [Reply]

    Um, sorry Marvin, that face is less “terrible twos” than “My mom has had some problems dealing with my grumpy mood swings since the voices told me to stop taking my meds and start setting mom on fire.” But why is the dog so frickin’ pissed off too? “Goddammit, how the hell did I get into this strip?” he growls to himself, looking around, “and how the hell do I get out of it?”

  38. chris
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:30 am [Reply]

    General Halftracks wife could kick General Halftracks bony ass right through that grill.
    …and those forearms, that’s a lotta woman.

  39. teddytoad
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:31 am [Reply]

    And another thing:

    Comparing April Bower (bower, n., one who bows under the weight of her breasts) to pear-shaped Mrs. Halftrack today, I am more and more convinced that the latter is just Benny Hill in a wig and a leather miniskirt.

  40. Carly
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:47 am [Reply]

    The real reason people run for judge? I dunno. I wish my law school classmates (myself included) looked like that. On the other hand, I’m probably totally incorrect in thinking that any of the above people other than the judge himself have anything to do with the legal profession. (I suppose if I want to be technical, the judge himself has very little do do with the legal profession, either in strip where he spends most of his time with hot women, or out, where he has as much in common with the law as Law and Order does.)

  41. bats :[
    February 23rd, 2009 at 1:21 am [Reply]

    Some early Monday observations:

    FC: okay. THIS is funny.
    (I don’t have kids, and the thought of a real little mucus-machine terrifies me. But this is funny.)

    MW: love the lady in Panel 1. Looks like she’s just about to keep over in her — well, whatever the hell she’s eating.

    Phantom: ah, the Hitler Youth Equestrian Division is on the move! (Why do Frick and Frack look even dorkier without their diapers?)

  42. fishmorgjp
    February 23rd, 2009 at 1:59 am [Reply]

    C’mon, Marvin, if you want to be funny, drink a gallon of poison and fall into a live volcano or something.

  43. druidbros
    February 23rd, 2009 at 3:45 am [Reply]

    Marvin – shows he is only a two year old when trying to understand what a bastard he will really be when he is out impregnating all the girls in town and smoking weed at his friends house every weekend when he is a teenager. Doesnt even compare to hearing a two year old say ‘NO!’.

  44. Razq
    February 23rd, 2009 at 4:45 am [Reply]

    Halftrack’s car obviously got dented while parked, and his wife is just being passive aggressive.

  45. Lark
    February 23rd, 2009 at 5:10 am [Reply]

    If it had been written about couch orgies and women in dresses like THAT, I’d have had a way easier time memorizing the opening to Canterbury Tales back in 10th grade.

  46. Hopscotch Willie
    February 23rd, 2009 at 6:18 am [Reply]

    It’s surely worse for the cartoonist to have wasted his time redrawing the second frame of Marvin, than having copied and pasted it, in some misguided attempt to avoid short changing his readers. Especially when your readers are already the most short changed on the comics page.

  47. Hopscotch Willie
    February 23rd, 2009 at 6:21 am [Reply]

    And I think General Halftrack dented his grille by having sex with it. Then he beat up his wife.

    But he never has sex with HER in case she gets ‘dented’.

  48. Francis
    February 23rd, 2009 at 7:40 am [Reply]

    Actually, those two Marvin drawings are slightly different — which means you can do the Magic Eye thing with them and view them as a stereogram, in case you’ve ever wanted to see Marvin in 3-D standing next to a two-headed dog.

  49. Patrick
    February 23rd, 2009 at 9:14 am [Reply]

    I haven’t been to very many high-falutin’ judge-type parties, but I believe it’s considered a little bit rude to sit inbetween your date’s wide-open legs while he paws at your boobs.

  50. Anonymous
    February 23rd, 2009 at 10:16 am [Reply]


    In an contrary way, I really, really appreciate the strips featuring General Halftrack and his Ball and Chain. For years and years, this couple has unwaveringly pushed the idea of marriage as consisting of: a frustrated, alcoholic, horny old coot, held captive for decades by his fat, frumpy, nagging ugly OLD wife. There’s Old Coot tempted by young snatch everywhere, if only his ugly fat old Ball and Chain would drop dead, he’s buy a red Corvette and get him some of that, but no, there she is nagging him again, let’s have a drink….

    There are lots of other strips of this ilk: The Wizard of Id features fat, nagging, frumpy old wives who make their men’s lives sheer misery. And The Lockhorns! There, we have a trio of Frustrated Men welded to Fat Old Ugly Wives!

  51. The Great Kazoo
    February 23rd, 2009 at 10:56 am [Reply]

    I came here to make the same comment that Islamorada Girl and Steph made. Right down to the “Haw”. How weird is that?

  52. Ranger
    February 23rd, 2009 at 11:34 am [Reply]

    I tend to think Mr. and Mrs. Halftrack were in the midst of marital passion on the hood of the car. The good General, with the help of the little blue pill, got a little carried away and slammed his wife’s head into the grill of the car during climax putting a dent in the bumper. He’s now figuring out how to straighten said bumper and clean up the makeup, blood, scalp, and blue hairs from the grill.

  53. Rick
    February 23rd, 2009 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    You missed the point in Beetle Baily. The General’s wife has a purse, so obviously she crashed the car! Get it?!? Women can’t drive! HA!

  54. Hysterical Woman
    February 23rd, 2009 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    50. The wives may be old and ugly, but so are the husbands. Plus the husbands are also drunks. They’re no catch either.

  55. Holy Prepuce
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:17 pm [Reply]

    Wait, Marvin is supposed to be two? I know that we’re privy to his complex inner monlogue via thought baloon, but shouldn’t his parents be concerned that he has never yet spoken a word aloud?

  56. Dr. Robotnik
    February 23rd, 2009 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    Beetle Bailey:

    I tend to think that General Halftrack has lost interest in his “wife” because he’s finally discovered that “Martha” is in fact Sgt. Snorkel in drag. It would explain the void in “her” chesticological area. However 50+ years of marriage would make the decision to divorce a difficult one. The thought of the alimony bill added to the shock of the media poopstorm when it’s discovered would only deepen the wound of finally knowing he’s been sleeping with a transvestite for all those years. Or am I reading too much into this?

  57. Naq
    February 23rd, 2009 at 1:21 pm [Reply]

    It appears that Randy’s talking crotch responds first to the announcement of April’s arrival. Randy looks a bit confused, but his crotch is already in a panic.

  58. Charterstoned
    February 23rd, 2009 at 1:27 pm [Reply]

    JP – It looks like that woman sitting on the couch next to Randy is wearing handcuffs. And it looks like April has only one enormousbreast, not two. It’s a deviant party, isn’t it?

    MW – Ted’s thumb in panel 2 is a fake attached halfway up his arm. His real hand is fondling Mary’s boob across the table.

  59. Crankshafts funky smelling corpse
    February 23rd, 2009 at 1:49 pm [Reply]

    Jugs Parker lives up to its name once again.

    What also amazes me about this strip is that I don’t think I’ve seen a single non-white person (besides the would be suicide bomber) in the time that I’ve been following thing. (Which was sometime after the new artist took over).

    It’s like a movie from 1959. Everybody, including the criminals, are WASPs.

  60. wykstrad
    February 23rd, 2009 at 2:41 pm [Reply]

    Actually, I’m pretty sure those Marvin strips are redrawn, not copied- there are changes to Marvin’s mouth, the position of his eyes, and the angle of the dog’s head. And yeah, most of those changes could have been done in Manga Studio or Photoshop, but do we really expect a newspaper cartoonist to know what Photoshop is?

  61. Crunchy Frog
    February 23rd, 2009 at 2:42 pm [Reply]

    I think the dog in ‘Marvin’ is saying to himself, “here’s the crazy thing — if I were to maul that brat within an inch of his life, I’m the one who would get put to sleep! Where’s the justice?”

  62. Buckmode
    February 23rd, 2009 at 3:59 pm [Reply]

    “Are you implying that I look old enough to be Randy’s mother?! You little bitch, we’ll just see who has the biggest breasts around here! (Oops, is that a thought balloon above my head?)”

  63. aimme
    February 23rd, 2009 at 4:12 pm [Reply]

    Nice muffin tops, Martha.

  64. Catu
    February 23rd, 2009 at 8:36 pm [Reply]

    If you can drag your attention away from their enormous size, you’ll probably notice that April’s breasts don’t really work like normal breasts should. No, not even considering that they are gigantic and probably artificial. They look a lot like her recently arrived bum.

    Plus, the position of the speech balloon really makes her look like she’s got an abnormally skinny arm and some sort of sausage implanted near her armpit, which might be even more hilarious than the boob part.

  65. Steve S
    February 23rd, 2009 at 8:55 pm [Reply]

    That’s clearly not a photocopy! Marvin’s eyes have shifted, and the dog has turned its head. Actually, I think this is a Slylock Fox “spot the differences” feature.

  66. Eva
    February 24th, 2009 at 12:25 am [Reply]

    Someone should sue over the April character. The head shot of her in the first strip the eyes, mouth and nose look a good deal like the actress Jessica Biel and the gown she is wearing is one Biel wore to a movie opening a few years back. Which means I spend far to much time looking at fashion magazines and comic strips….

  67. Anonymous
    March 1st, 2009 at 3:59 pm [Reply]

    And are we seeing nipples?

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