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Funky Winkerbean, 3/26/09

You know, I’ve gotten into a nice little groove here on this blog, but sometimes I have a crisis of faith. I wonder if my analysis gets more repetitive than the material warrants. Are the running jokes (which have their own section in this site’s Wikipedia entry!) getting overdone? Should I stop pointing out that Herb and Jamaal is ludicrously non-specific, that Marmaduke is a terrifying, all-devouring demon-thing, and that Funky Winkerbean is a black hole of bleakness and depression and cancer from which no joy or laughter can escape?

Then along come strips like this to reaffirm my central mission. For those of you not in the know, elevated PSA levels could indicate prostate cancer, and that biopsy will probably involve a scalpel in close proximity to Funky’s junk. This, naturally, is the only result that you can reasonably expect when you dare to beg God for relief from your ceaseless troubles. If there’s any consolation, it’s that Funky is a much less likable character than the last one who died of cancer here, and the strip’s admirable commitment to authenticity means that he’ll just get angrier and less pleasant as his slow march to death continues.

The dude sitting in a wheelchair a foot away from a TV blaring out grim economic news is really the strip’s pièce de résistance. Because there was a chance that you might read this and think “Hey, I don’t have cancer”; obviously you need to be reminded that you’ll soon be warming your hands over a trash-can fire and eating beans out of a can, probably after having become wheelchair-bound in an unrelated incident.

Dick Tracy, 3/26/09

It’s a sad day when America’s greatest comic-strip detective starts borrowing plot themes from Mary Worth, but the difference in how the two strips handle these identity theft storylines ought to be instructive. When Mary tackled it, we saw a lot of weeping and panic and forgiveness and easy-to-follow instructions from helpful experts. Dick Tracy’s take will no doubt involve weeping and panic as well, but a lot more broken bones and flayed skin, and definitely no forgiveness.

Mary Worth, 3/26/09

“Yes, the donation will be the last thing he’ll be thinking of … ever, once my plan to poison him is completed! MOO HA HA HA! Oh, wait, did I just say that part aloud?”


  1. Muffaroo
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:11 pm [Reply]

    I read that Wikipedia entry the other night. It should have been funnier, I thought.

  2. Cafangdra
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:17 pm [Reply]

    Intersting development in the Winkerverse, consdering What’s-his-name–the cartoonist–actually survived prostate cancer himself. In fact, wasn’t his brush with prostate cancer the inspiration for Lisa’s horrible demise? I’m surprised he’s revisiting the theme in this way. But I’m not surprised Batiuk (that’s his name) is making his characters suffer extravagantly.

  3. Alan's Addiction
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    Once again, I salute Funky Winkerbean for taking a seriously unfunny topic and making it… even less funny and more depressing, somehow. The only possible upside is that, at the rate the characters are dying, there’s a slim chance that all the characters in the strip could be dead as soon as… let me check… 2057. Well, I now have something else to live for.
    In light of Dick Tracy’s unrepentant gambling friend moving into petty larceny to support his addiction, I’d say that my earlier prediction of Tracy bashing the addiction out of him has an excellent chance of coming true. I also like the concept of DT recycling Mary Worth storylines with a light splattering of violence; I can’t wait until they get to the depressed ice skater and her control-freak father.
    Speaking of Mary Worth plot leakage, I like how Adrian is taking on a distinctive Margo appearance today; “Thrift, responsible spending, opennes… Bah! That stuff’s for fools!”

  4. Chicago Bob
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:24 pm [Reply]

    Just added a Rex Morgan item to the Wiki running jokes list, and appended some to the Marmaduke one, and I’m relatively new here. I’m thinking we can triple the size of that puppy once the long-term readers take a crack at it.

  5. JP (not Judge Parker)
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:30 pm [Reply]

    Batiuk’s master plan is working – his doom and gloom is spreading even on this site, as the Google ads are now all about prostate cancer. If you’re not thinking about cancer all the time, well he’s going to MAKE you think about it dammit.

  6. Edgy DC
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:32 pm [Reply]

    What I learned from Mary Worth: That consumer confidence in the American auto industry will rcover as soon as we make autombile models that place our faces three inches from the windshield and butt our forelocks agains the sun visor.

    It’s what the American driver demands, dammit!

  7. Dingo
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:33 pm [Reply]

    Josh, I enjoyed the wikipedia entry but it didn’t have the… ooomph of this site. When you post your comments here, I imagine you in nothing but a smoking jacket, sitting at your desk caressing a cigar in one hand and holding a glass of brandy in the other while your wife kneels beneath the desk and gives you oral pleasure. The wiki page reads as dry as my Aunt Judy’s mock apple pie.

  8. Canaduck
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:33 pm [Reply]

    M-mail? What in the world is m-mail??

  9. AMC
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:36 pm [Reply]

    Funky reads Job for comic relief.

  10. Izzy
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:37 pm [Reply]

    Short for morbidus-mail?

  11. Mister Terrific
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:37 pm [Reply]

    Ummm….I really don’t want to be the one who points this out, but it ain’t a scalpel to the junk.

    You’re welcome. Feel free to curl into a fetal ball and whimper, just like Funky.

  12. BeeF
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:39 pm [Reply]

    What struck me about the three strips highlighted today was that mood lighting could’ve been used better in all three:

    Funky: As he reads, the background should have gotten darker and darker. Like his soul. Bonus points for having the guy in the wheelchair turn around in the last panel and being Masky McDeath.

    Dick: Why the silhouette in panel 2? Is that what Dick is shooting at? I’m confused.

    Mary: Adrian’s foreshadowing would’ve been much more effective if the upper half of her face had been shadowed so all you saw were her ice-blue eyes.

  13. Racing J
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:39 pm [Reply]

    I want to thank Funky for showing us the front of his I-phone in panel one. Otherwise, we might assume that he’s staring at a blank screen trying to figure out how to turn the damn thing on.

  14. These Strange Worlds
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:39 pm [Reply]


    Thanks for the Phantom gifs. I’ll print them out and frame them tomorrow!

    Probably do a scan of this week’s Prince Valiant too.

  15. Frinkenstein
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:39 pm [Reply]

    The real downer for Funky will be that the stress from worrying about his PSA will result in his having a heart attack or stroke, after which he’ll find out — as was in the news recently — that PSA tests aren’t very good indicators of prostate cancer after all. Yep. That seems appropriately Funked up.

  16. teddytoad
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:40 pm [Reply]

    So… first question: is Dick Tracy FBI? Some cop whose precinct decided to pitch in for video wrist-watches? Exactly what jurisdiction do you have to have for your assignment to start out, “We have a rash of identity thefts in the country. The perps are getting credit card numbers.” Is he with the FTC?

    Second question: umm, like, duhh? Does Dick Tracy think this is topical? I suppose the March 2029 arc will feature a whimsically drawn villian “Barney Made-off” and begin with the chief saying, “Tracy, have you ever heard of a Pawnzy scheme?”

  17. gal friday
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:44 pm [Reply]

    MW–isn’t Ted a National Geographic “reporter”? What kind of business deals could he possibly have lined up? Hostile takeover of Mark Trail’s rag?

  18. Evan
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:45 pm [Reply]

    “An iPhone!? Young lady, I’ve been using the two-way wrist radio since January 1946 – if it was good enough then it’s good enough now!”

  19. Lorna
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:46 pm [Reply]

    I think my favorite part of Funky Winkerbean today is the news announcer’s use of “plummet,” a fantastic verb that would normally not find much use in the Funky!verse, as the characters and their hopes and dreams do no so much “plummet” as “spiral slowly into a black pit of despair” from which there is no escape.

    Oh, and also, cancer.

  20. Aging Hipster
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:46 pm [Reply]

    I think Ted’s business deal involves a mortgage, some train tracks, and a pencil thin mustache.

    I’m just kidding. He is going to marry Adrian and then kill her.

  21. NJP
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:47 pm [Reply]

    In defense of Batiuk, no one in the Funkyverse has come down with cancer for at least ten years! It’s not like it happens all the time.

    Nope, sorry couldn’t keep a straight face. I’d say we can look forward to another 10 year jump where Batiuk can explore the indignities of old age being visited on his once youthful characters, but he already has Crankshaft for that.

  22. AlphabetFish
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:48 pm [Reply]

    Well, prostate cancer often progresses very, very slowly–Funky might die of something else years from now and still have no major ill effects from prostate cancer. Also, good news for him, since it’s not a vital organ, it can be removed completely and he’ll probably be fine.

    What this means for strip readers is that he’ll just complain constantly about the discomfort/hospital bills/lost dignity/whatever instead of dying and giving us some peace.

  23. Bret
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:48 pm [Reply]

    Tracy might have bought an I-phone, actually.

    Are there any widely available torture device apps?

  24. evil_bacteria
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:50 pm [Reply]

    I normally enjoy Doonesbury, but I can’t stand the plots that deal with his daughter Alex, who seems to exist for the sole purpose of complaining about how hard it is to have a lot of money and attend a prestigious university. It doesn’t help that she’s even homlier than B.D., who is a dude and has a nose shaped like a parrot’s beak.

  25. Racing J
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:51 pm [Reply]

    The irony is that Crankshaft used to drive Funky’s bus when Funky was in high school. Now Funky is going to die before Crankshaft. That should bring a smirk to his face.

  26. Rubrick
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:54 pm [Reply]

    If I may be permitted some gentle criticism, your Curmudgeonliness, I’d say that you are, in fact, overdoing the repitition, Cancer Tumorbean notwithstanding. You’ve almost entirely abandoned commenting on bizarre artwork and inexplicable punctuation, which I’ve always found far more entertaining than “Mary Worth is a meddler” or “Mark trail punches people with mustaches”. The range of strips you comment on regularly also seems to have grown narrower and narrower.

    I’m still a fan, but I’m that your groove may, in fact, be a rut.

  27. Donald the Anarchist
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:55 pm [Reply]

    DT Stealing credit card numbers is about as old as those receipts that used carbon paper to make the customer’s copy. What’s next, this new-fangled drug the kids call reefer?

    FW Now what would have been funny is if the message came by singing telegram. Not exactly original, but funny.

    MW “Let’s just get married, darling, and then all those pesky details like identity theft and bad credit can be ironed out. After all, as your dad’s girlfriend would say, Marriage makes everything better!!”

  28. Digger
    March 26th, 2009 at 5:57 pm [Reply]

    Batiuk should really make Cancer a recurring character in the strip, much like Family Circus’ “Not Me.” “Who’s slowing kiling me in such a depressing way?” “Cancer!” (Then show see-through guy with “Cancer” written on his stomach giggling with glee.)

    #17 – I believe Ted actually works for National Geography, which is no way affiliated with National Geographic. But there are a lot of business deals to be had in this industry. Despite the recent economic downturn, the geography market is very hot right now. Ted will be buying up geography like there’s no tomorrow.

  29. Soccerhead
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:00 pm [Reply]

    The Devil’s strip?
    Is “Crankshaft” the Devil’s strip?
    Or is that “Funky Winkerbean”?
    GT: Mr Southland?
    I guess if this were “Curtis”, it would be Mr. Kumar.

  30. Uncle Lumpy
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:02 pm [Reply]

    #22 Abelfish –

    . . . prostate cancer often progresses very, very slowly–Funky might die of something else years from now . . . .

    So it’s win-win!

  31. tt
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:06 pm [Reply]

    FW: Let’s just be glad he’s going straight from PSAs to biopsy without a week-long digital exam smirkfest. Next stop: impotence.

  32. leathermessiah
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:09 pm [Reply]

    Somebody please, please start a band called Funky’s Junk. I’m begging you. I’d do it myself, but I haven’t the time.

  33. bats :[
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:11 pm [Reply]

    Well, pththth! (in the words of Opus) to the naysayers.

  34. Old Doc Yak
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:11 pm [Reply]

    9CL: The Bloviator-in-chief is back. Fuck that psychotic bastard.

    Brooke McEldowney, I mean. Not the Bloviator.

  35. yellojkt
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:11 pm [Reply]

    Funky is going to go to the hospital and find Les guarding the corridor with a desk-mounted machine gun resulting in a tragic shoot-out.

  36. Mac
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:19 pm [Reply]

    I actually have (treatable) cancer. And frankly, after reading the latest from Batiuk’s World of Hurt, I feel like going back down to the chemo center and hanging out somewhere more cheerful.

  37. bats :[
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:30 pm [Reply]

    If Funky weren’t wallowing in self-pity, he could demonstrate what a sharp businessman he is (with plenty of moxie) by having that biopsy NOW, since he’s at the hospital, as he waits for news about his dad. Everyone admires a multi-tasking go-getter, especially in these rough economic times.
    Maybe even have the biopsy right out there in the lobby. Not only could that distract everyone there from the abysmal news of the days, but it might remind other men how important a prostate exam is.

    (Unless it’s administered by Rex Morgan, M.D. Then it’s just plain ooky.)

  38. One-eyed Wolfdog
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:31 pm [Reply]

    Sunrise: Tom Batuik awakens and greets the dawn with a song in his heart. Of course, the song is Warren Zevon’s Play it All Night Long, and it is making him very angry because it is so unbearably rosy and cheerful.

  39. Talking Squirrel
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:33 pm [Reply]

    FW: Yep, Funky’s not long for this world. But, whereas most writers who whack their characters do it simply to make way for new ones (DT demonstrates this with unrivaled purity), in Castorbean they don’t depart discreetly postmortem.

    Instead, they just morph into ghosts that leer over their loved one’s shoulders … weh, weh iz mir.

  40. Lisa
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:34 pm [Reply]


  41. sugarpie
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:35 pm [Reply]

    Mary Worth I’ve only been following Mary Worth for a few months, actually only since finding this site. (Thanks Josh!)

    I find it mildly fascinating because it’s one of the few strips that actually gets worse on a daily basis. Currently it has the visual aesthetics of a 1980′s IHOP and the literary sensibilities of Jaqueline Suzanne. Im not complaining mind you, since IHOP and Jackie Suzanne are two of my favorite things.

  42. blackgoat
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:39 pm [Reply]

    MW: “Queenie,” you and Ted CAN make it on your doctor’s salary. You may have to budget, though. No more volumizing shampoo – oops, you already have cut back in that department.
    FW: one word for Funky: euthanasia.

  43. Baka Gaijin
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:41 pm [Reply]

    Tomorrow’s Mary Worth: On a mustard yellow couch Mary is vibrating uncontrollably, her meddle-sense pegging the meter because someone near to her is preparing to ruinher life and needs good advice STAT! Either that or her “toy” is running on turbo speed to distract her from her biddying duty.

  44. gal friday
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:49 pm [Reply]

    #28–yes, I couldn’t remember the name of Ted’s magazine that is so clearly really National Geographic. “National Geography”–no one will make the connection!

  45. Poteet
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:50 pm [Reply]

    FW — I’m surprised that Batiuk hasn’t done more with heart disease. I know people who have had bypasses, stents, heart attacks, and (in one case) a sudden heart-related death, and it seems to me that Batiuk could do a lot with that kind of material.

    DT — When MW dealt with identity theft, it was possible to tell what was going on in time and space. The events and conversations were ridiculous, but they were sequential.

    Whereas in DT, the same things keep happening over and over in different bizarre ways, and Time is treated like a giant yoyo. Today, as B.O. goes through yet another version of the same conversation with Gertie, we see that Locher is walking the dog yet again.

    DT is what GROUNDHOG DAY would have been like if it had been written by someone on acid. Really bad acid.

  46. Steve S
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:50 pm [Reply]

    The obvious subtext of having the a possible cancer diagnosis layered on top of economic crisis news is that three panels of Funky Winkerbean is far worse than both of those things put together. The Batiuk signature should appear directly below the newscast in each one.

  47. gal friday
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:51 pm [Reply]

    Speaking of Funky Winkerbean–tomorrow is the anniversary of the strip’s debut in 1972. (March 27).

  48. Minstrel
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:56 pm [Reply]

    “You have reached the m-mail for Funky Winkerbean. I apologise for the stutter, it’s just that I realised that no matter how shiny and technolgocially advanced this device is, no matter how many jiggawatts of music it can store, no matter how many funny and/or perverted games it can run… it still is a phone, a conduit through which the world can pile more of the soul-numbing suffering set side for us on me. Oh, and look – thanks to voice mail I won’t miss any of the horrifying news readied for me weekly, even if I don’t pick up. Leave your message after the beep and I’ll call you back.”


  49. Dr. Weird
    March 26th, 2009 at 6:59 pm [Reply]

    39 Talking Squirrel -

    Who would be inflicted with the shade of Funky? I mean, Les’s relationship with his dead wife is creepy and wrong, but at least he takes some comfort from it, so Funky’s haunting will have to be something more grim and depressing.

    Perhaps he’ll be Cory’s conscience, appearing over his son’s shoulder at the punk gropes Summer (who he got drunk) in the back seat of his car. Cory will grow even more angry and sullen that he’s not free of his not-dad and act out even more.

  50. Talking Squirrel
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:00 pm [Reply]

    31 tt: “Let’s just be glad he’s going straight from PSAs to biopsy without a week-long digital exam smirkfest.”

    That was the plan from jump street, because he knew if he ever wrote a digital exam into this strip, we’d rename it immediately and forever “Skunky Sphincterbean.”

  51. gal friday
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:02 pm [Reply]

    MT–OMG, what’s that hand in panel 3?

    A3G–That’s Nurse Tommie to you.

  52. Spk
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:08 pm [Reply]

    FW: Here’s to hoping the ‘Shaft still has his funeral shoes laid out!

  53. Violet
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:11 pm [Reply]

    I’m at a loss to understand why Adrian thinks her statement to Ted would be in any way reassuring. She’s basically saying, “Oh, honey, don’t be ridiculous! Daddy’s not going to worry about some silly old donation; he’ll be thinking, ‘Over my dead body is my precious, brilliant little girl going to marry some shifty bum with no assets, no job and nothing to offer!’ And you know what? I think I agree. So who’s up for some ice cream? My treat, of course.”

  54. ScienceGiant
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:14 pm [Reply]

    MW – Eyes! On! The! Road! DAMMIT! Where did you learn drivers ed?

    DT – Seriously? The guy with the 2way wristwatch thingly is only NOW getting an iPhone?

  55. Metz77
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:16 pm [Reply]

    Jesus Christ, I always forget how glacially the storylines in Mary Worth move.

  56. ScienceGiant
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:17 pm [Reply]

    #41 sugarpie — umm! IHOP pancakes! My treat of course

  57. fnord3125
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:29 pm [Reply]

    I, too, would enjoy seeing a greater range of strips commented upon.

    that said, i enjoy many of the “running gags.” But was a bit confused after looking at that section of the wikipedia article. I mean, some of the things, like Marmaduke being a man-eating hellhound, I’d call running gags. But aren’t some of them (like “Mary Worth is a wealthy widow who loves meddling in others’ business. Most story arcs include bland storylines with plenty of questionable clothing (see electric blue slacks).” and “Funky Winkerbean is ‘a black hole of bleakness and depression and cancer from which no joy or laughter can escape’”) objectively accurate?

    Maybe I’ve been drinking the Curmudgeon Kool-aid for too long…

  58. Crunchy Frog
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:29 pm [Reply]

    Damn those cancer-causing elevated public service announcements! Or, wait, am I missing something?

    #28, #44 – No no, it’s Nation’s Geography, it’s not the same at all.

    FC: When the museum guards tackle you and haul you away from it, Dolly, and the art world at large angrily decries the damage you’ve done: that’s when. Why, are you thinking of emulating The Cheat?

  59. mcc
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:36 pm [Reply]

    What the devil is that man wearing on his head? Is it a block of cheese?

  60. Vermillion
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:38 pm [Reply]

    You know, I keep thinking to myself–THIS will be the last storyline I will follow in Mary Worth or Mark Trail, but I get sucked back in, probably because I like to keep up with Josh’s comments. Alas, I look them up every morning to see what has happened with Ted or Bucky (that was the deer, right?) and I swear it will be the last time. Oh well…

  61. Carly
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:39 pm [Reply]

    My own personal take is that sometimes jokes are funny because they’re repeated, or at least they get funnier with hearing it over and over. The problem with the comics’ repetition is often that it wasn’t funny to begin with. For example, golf isn’t funny. It will not start being funny if you attempt to write jokes about it repatedly. On the other hand, Marmaduke eating people is funny, and it gets funnier the more you repeat it because every time you do it’s in relation to a strip where it appears that Marmaduke intends to eat someone (or is at least engaging in behavior that could be creatively interpreted that way).

    That’s my take on it. I love running jokes!

  62. Carly
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:40 pm [Reply]

    And, now that I think about it, there is a difference between running jokes and the same joke told over and over again. If someone can articulate the difference, please do.

  63. Islamorada Girl
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:45 pm [Reply]

    9CL: Too late, I realize Thorax looks like Dick Cheney. Oh, the missed opportunities!

  64. odinthor
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:57 pm [Reply]

    OK, I’m in. Here’s a try: A “running joke” is the same observation applied to new circumstances, often only in shortened allusive form; while “the same joke told over and over again” is the same observation applied to the same circumstances at the same old full length.

  65. Jackuul
    March 26th, 2009 at 7:59 pm [Reply]

    Remember a few days ago when I said I might merge the universe of Garfield and Mary Worth?


  66. Lolsworth
    March 26th, 2009 at 8:09 pm [Reply]

    Funky will probably pick up after its next timejump, which will be a further 75 years into the future. Every strip will show the corpses and\or ashes of the main cast as they decompose, get eaten by worms, and occasionally make wry comments about being dead. It should prove less depressing than the current strip, at least until the worm that lives inside Les’ eye socket develops a malignat glioma of the cillum.

  67. Bitter Scribe
    March 26th, 2009 at 8:12 pm [Reply]

    I like how FW zoomed in on his face in each panel. Too bad he didn’t have the space to keep going like in House, where they plunge all the way down the patient’s mouth and into his innards.

    Of course, for prostate problems, they’d have to…

    Never mind. Forget I brought it up.

  68. Steve S
    March 26th, 2009 at 8:17 pm [Reply]

    P. S. I could do without Marmaduke as demon-dog, but mocking Funky’s grimness and H&J’s vagueness work great for me because they’re strong critiques of the strips themselves.

  69. Izzy
    March 26th, 2009 at 8:28 pm [Reply]

    #65 – the silent “beat” panel was SO Garfield and cracked me up!

  70. gnome de blog
    March 26th, 2009 at 8:32 pm [Reply]

    It was only about a month ago that I wailed that the Bucky/Patty/Ken love triangle was the stupidest Mark Trail storyline ever.

    Not any more.

  71. Jamus The Bartender
    March 26th, 2009 at 8:53 pm [Reply]

    FC: Jeff asks himself this same question every Sunday.

  72. Mister Beautiful
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:02 pm [Reply]

    Stick by your guns, Josh, stick by your guns. There’s a reason why Comics Curmudgeon gets its own Wikipedia page. Only thing is, you may want to focus more on comics that are more cheerful and upbeat. Like The Lockhorns.

  73. Muffaroo
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:09 pm [Reply]

    Digger @28 – I think you’re really onto something here with the little ghostly “Cancer” character. It would improve the strip immeasurably. Not that almost any major change wouldn’t, but it would be even better than expected by random chance.

    Mac – Well, I’m glad it’s treatable. Here’s hoping for the least inconvenience possible from it.

    gal friday @44 – Ted is clearly from Blecchworld, where everything is a cheap knockoff of something in our world. He probably wears a Hormilton wristwatch, jogs in NIKF shoes, watches a SAMYO television, and eats at the Bum Boat.

    Spk @52 – I keep hoping the next pair of funeral shoes Crankshaft wears will be the special kind with no bottoms.

    Bitter Scribe @67 – I got to see the opposite sort of zoom today, lying on my side watching the monitor at the beginning of my colonoscopy. It was really interesting for about 20 seconds, and then the knockout stuff took effect. I blinked, and at the other side of the blink, I was back in the cubicle where I’d gotten undressed. Too bad. After the days of wretched prep, it was a bit of an anticlimax and not getting my money’s worth. On the plus side, my colon is sparkling clean and lemon fresh.

  74. Jackuul
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:12 pm [Reply]

    What have I created!? A monstrosity of colliding universes continues in the parallel but equally insipid and deranged universe of GarMar!

  75. Gilligan
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:15 pm [Reply]

    When did Dick Tracy marry Beavis? (Please leave me the illusion no one has made this joke before.)

  76. Crunchy Frog
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:16 pm [Reply]

    #65 – Jackuul, that was awesome!

  77. Crunchy Frog
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:17 pm [Reply]

    Both of them were, I mean.

  78. Jackuul
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:23 pm [Reply]

    Thank you Crunchy Frog and Izzy. Please note the subliminal message added through the use of Garfield in panel 1.

  79. Eldaglass
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:31 pm [Reply]

    What sort of power does Adrian have over Ted that instead of inspiring confidence and diverting attention away from his real schemes, Ted confesses his problems and failures at her slightest raised eyebrow? “I have no money! I lost my job! I knowingly wrote a bad check for your dad! I’m marrying you for the money!” Soon he’ll be curled up at Adrian’s feet, sobbing out things like, “I proposed because you remind me of my dog! I can’t spell! This mustache is pasted on!” Adrian’s right: her dad won’t worry about the check. Dr. Jeff will be too horrified at seeing a younger version of his relationship with Mary Worth to think about anything else.

  80. Eldaglass
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:41 pm [Reply]

    Btw: I do enjoying the running gags, but like to see comments that have nothing to do with them.

  81. kkarenb
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:44 pm [Reply]

    55 Metz77 – Mary Worth’s storyline is moving at breakneck speed compared to the frozen wasteland that is Rex Morgan. Isn’t it still only the SECOND DAY of that cruise?

  82. Sheila Sternwell
    March 26th, 2009 at 9:48 pm [Reply]

    #26 Rubrick: I’m still a fan, but I’m that your groove may, in fact, be a rut.

    Keep your fantasies about Josh’s groove-rut to yourself, pervert. Or post them on and make sure you give us the link. Either way is fine.

    #45 Poteet: I’m surprised that Batiuk hasn’t done more with heart disease.

    Batiuk talks about cancer because Batiuk had cancer. If he’d had heart disease, then yeah, everyone in the Funkiverse would have had heart disease.

  83. Bitter Scribe
    March 26th, 2009 at 10:03 pm [Reply]

    #73: Muffaroo: May you never have an experience like the one I had the first time.

    It was the same sort of interesting journey at first. Then they clipped a blood vessel, and the screen went red. You don’t want to know the rest. Let’s just say it made the wretched prep look like sunshine and flowers.

  84. sugarpie
    March 26th, 2009 at 10:14 pm [Reply]

    Josh What you are doing is a public service-it keeps all of us out of the bars and off the streets. Keep on keeping on till you get tired of it. Not that you asked. Not really.

  85. Cranky
    March 26th, 2009 at 10:15 pm [Reply]

    We have a new record holder for biggest freakin’ arm in comic page history. Sources inside Popeye tell us the sailor is spinach-loading in preparation for his response.

  86. Stev0
    March 26th, 2009 at 10:43 pm [Reply]

    If Funky Winkerbean kills off the main character, what will it be called? Unfortunately, the ideal name, “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now”, is too long.

  87. Black Drazon
    March 26th, 2009 at 10:45 pm [Reply]

    Here’s a question: what happens to Funky Winkerbean (the comic) if Funky Winkerbean (the shattered, broken, cancerous shell of a man) dies? I can only assume the strip will end, sort of like how Batuik hinted that this might be the last chapter at one point. Of course, by “end” I mean it will physically collapse, crushing everyone still trapped inside.

  88. anaceofkidneys
    March 26th, 2009 at 10:47 pm [Reply]

    Hey, I’d never seen that Wikipedia page before, pretty nifty. (And I turned “asexual” into a link for you. Vive la révolution.)

  89. Poteet
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:11 pm [Reply]

    # 73 Muffaroo — Now I’m feeling bitter again. In my case, the wretched knockout stuff never did work, and I remained in what I think the professionals refer to as “significant discomfort.” Not the trip to Oblivion I was promised by a long shot. The next time I have one, I’m going to demand better drugs even if it means brain damage.

    # 82 Sheila — Thanks. Interesting. Now I’m thinking of some afflictions that Batiuk could have had instead of cancer that might provide more merriment. Mostly I’m thinking pubic lice.

  90. fnord3125
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:16 pm [Reply]

    Oh, I also could do with less “Mamaduke eats people” jokes but only if it’s replaced with more “Marmaduke’s owner-man is Hitler” jokes. I like those.

  91. Doug Puthoff
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:17 pm [Reply]

    FW–I’m surprised that, scanning through yesterday’s and today’s comment, Batiuk is talking about stock market crashes when in fact his strips takes place in the future. I thought that, in the future, President Clambake…uhh, Obama, has solved all of problems, and that the whole world is living in love and peace, everyone in America is working (except Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter), the U.s is out of debt, and there is no debt, and everyone lives happily ever after. Yeah, stinking right.

  92. Les of the Jungle Patrol
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:17 pm [Reply]

    #89 Poteet, he’s saving the pubic lice for Crankshaft. You’ll be surprised by which paths they spread from person to person and the grumpy smirks they inspire.

  93. Mel
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:19 pm [Reply]

    Poteet: Only if Jack Elrod gets to draw the lice.

  94. Soccerhead
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:26 pm [Reply]

    GT: It seems that when we first saw the Larkins, they were lighter skinned, but now they’ve become darker.
    Or is this just a pigment of my imagination?

  95. commodorejohn
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:33 pm [Reply]

    #93 Mel – Mark Trail should totally do a Sunday about lice.

  96. Mrs Threeway Taint
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:33 pm [Reply]

    83 Bitter Scribe …

    WHAT?! WHAT????!!!!

    Jesus Christ (wo)man! I got to hear about my colon falling apart black and blue in the surgeon’s hands when she lifted it out. And your post is making me curl up in the fetal position and scream.

  97. Lisa
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:42 pm [Reply]

    #73 and #83- WTF?!? I was knocked out cold when I had my colonoscopy…. what’s this about doing that when people are conscious and can FEEL it?? Good God!

  98. Dave
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:48 pm [Reply]

    Dick Tracy’s take will no doubt involve weeping and panic as well, but a lot more broken bones and flayed skin, and definitely no forgiveness.

    Personally, I see this as a good thing. The more random destruction we can see rained down in the pages of the comics, the better. Ideally it will eventually drive off the old people who have managed to keep the comics page relatively frozen in time for decades and allow Blondie to finally die like the 102 year old she actually is. I’d also like to introduce you to Dick Tracy’s great-great-etc. grandson, Joe Dredd. (not really…or is he?)

  99. Mooncattie
    March 26th, 2009 at 11:53 pm [Reply]

    I’ve actually been thoroughly enjoying Sweeps Week of Funky. And we still have Friday and Saturday to go! What can possibly go wrong next? I’m hoping for a cop to show up with the news that jerky son Cory has been arrested. Does all this make me a horrible person? I would have preferred that all this would be happening in Hi & Lois, but I do try not to be a greedy man and am willing to accept all of this horror falling onto the slumping shoulders of someone who, don’t forget, deliberately makes crappy pizzas, and therefore, deserves it all. I really am horrible, aren’t I? Or maybe I’m just hungry again.

  100. commodorejohn
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:09 am [Reply]

    #99 Mooncattie – Whether or not it makes us bad people, I’m totally with you. Watching Funky Winkerbean descend into all-out open sadism is like the comedic equivalent of the relief that comes when you finally begin to vomit after spending ten minutes hovering nauseously over the toilet bowl. The process itself is horrible, but you’re so glad to finally just be getting it over with that you can’t help being glad about it (and, comics-wise, finding it hilarious.) More death and destruction, mules!

  101. Poteet
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:17 am [Reply]

    # 97 Lisa — That’s what I thought too. See # 89. I’m hoping it was a one-time aberration.

  102. Dale K.
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:34 am [Reply]

    My RSS feed paired its stub for this article with a banner ad that was creepy enough on its own, but even more so with the title. It was set up like this:

    [text] [close-up of teeth with no face] [text]

    Nightmare fuel!

  103. Poteet
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:36 am [Reply]

    # 99 Mooncattie — If you’re a horrible person, so am I. Except in my case, I’m hoping that Ted will part Adrian from her money so completely that she’ll end up wearing rags and living in her car. And still believing every word he says. After all I’ve endured from MW, I deserve this schadenfreude party. Muwahaha!

  104. GQ Luv
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:05 am [Reply]

    MW: When will this ruse end? How thick is the entire MW universe really?… Then again these are the people that give away their credit card information when the e-mail they receive is titled, “Phishing Attempt pt. 4″

  105. left of the pyle
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:28 am [Reply]

    Luann 3/27 panel one: TJ already “warmed” the house… “real well.” By that he means whatever plans for sexual congress Toni has come to offer, they cannot top his exploits. So what are those exploits? Teabagging the toaster? Fellating the furnace? Masturbating in the Master closet? Whatever it was, TJ’s not telling.

    But Brad and Toni y’all might want to wash the sheets. Oh yeah, and don’t use the coffee grinder.

  106. jack the red
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:30 am [Reply]

    Look Tess- Tracy isn’t getting a damn iphone even with it’s new FUTURISTIC CUT N’ PASTE!

    He’s still got another year on his Nextel DIRECT CONNECT contract he signed in 1946..

  107. boojum
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:31 am [Reply]


    Your sense of “something wicked this way comes” is even more likely than you know. A prostate biopsy is not done with a scalpel. It is a “needle biopsy” — a deceptively mild term for a procedure in which a needle (large enough to pull out a testable chunk of your prostate) is inserted right in there, directly through the skin and anything else in the way. To get an accurate view of the entire prostate, the technicians do this, not once, but FOURTEEN EFFING TIMES.

    Naturally, you are out cold for this procedure. Naturally as well, in my case, the knockout juice worked no better than for Poteet at her colonoscopy.

    “Significant discomfort” does not begin to cover it. Luckily for the technicians, I was at least too woozy to come up off the table and turn the machine on them.

    Before my surgery a month later, I had a nice lo-o-o-ng talk with the anesthesiologist.

    As for Funky’s case: Never have I so wished that art may imitate life.

  108. Phoebe
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:38 am [Reply]

    The fact that Dr. Joe’s monstrous girl-child looks more like Luann if she were two feet shorter has me suspecting foul play. I suppose I should have guessed – otherwise Tommy might have had a chance at happiness, and god forbid she should get more action then Margo.

  109. Jackuul
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:46 am [Reply]

    I apologize in advance…

    But… I had to.

  110. Mibbitmaker
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:57 am [Reply]

    Mahch Twenny-sevent’:

    9CL: Those 3, on the next Nightline. Thorax is barred from participating.

    A3G: She’s really Ralph Wiggum’s long lost sister, isn’t she?

    DtM: Dennis, your problem is that it’s quite the opposite.

    DT: It’s “EYEJACK”??? Grrrrrr…. BANG! ZOOM!!

    FW: “…And then, there’s the possible CANCERCANCERANCERancer ancer….”

    GA: CRRRUNCCCCHHHH! “Uh, what was that you were saying, Mr. Wallet?”
    “Oh……… nothing……”

    RMMD: He doesn’t look “chubby” in this one. Fairly regular size, actually. With their attitude, this strip could become “AnoRexia Morgan”.

    S-M: Yeah, THAT’s the superhero way, alright. (Sarcastic grimmace)

  111. Poteet
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:58 am [Reply]

    # 107 boojum — Words cannot begin to express my sympathy. Obviously I can’t know what you went through *shudder*. But in my case too, the anaesthetic worked well enough for wooziness but not nearly well enough for pain control. That long talk sounds like a great idea. Thanks. And I sure hope it worked for your surgery.

  112. Jackuul
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:12 am [Reply]

    When I had surgery in an unrelated ailment they put so much into me I ended up being forced awake so that I left the hospital. It was a knee surgery, but I did not wake up for 5 hours and they were closing – so they literally shook me awake, and rushed me out the door without a chance to use the washroom – after being pumped full of fluids, saline, and everything else.

  113. True Fable
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:13 am [Reply]

    Girls Gone 3G To quote the philosopher Chandler Bing: Can this BE any more boring? And to quote the philosopher Truman Fable: Holy shit, what a bee-grind.
    Children of the Circle naw, that’s just the booze talkiin’, kid.
    Flaky Wangstinger Don’t forget that we need to let Batuik pile it on a little more.
    Scenes from Suburban Hell Hi came to the disturbing realization that he was doomed to see his son’s pasty face on late night commercials for his law firm Dewey Bilkum Moore & Moore.
    Sam Driver, Chick Magnet She’ll have to make the squad on athletic ability because she sure isn’t going to fill out a sweater.
    Sweet & Shallow Ah, it’s the lovely Toni Daytona & the Cockteasers!
    Fist o justice Theater Wow! Now Rusty will be SURE to remember your face! IDIOT!
    Poopypants Honey, Marvin should be reason enough not to have another baby.
    Meddling Heights *grind grind grind*
    Rex Morgan, Man Whore hey! It’s the love child of Dennis the Non-Menace and Little Orphan Annie! I would have said “Art Garfunkle” but I respect Art Garfunkle too much for that.
    Spider -…. oh dear god just make it stop *grind grind hack cough wheeze grind* The man is totally helpless without that damn TV remote.

  114. apomixis
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:35 am [Reply]

    “…Funky’s junk…” Sadly, this two-word snippet of commentary contains more humor than the last 25 continuation-years of Funky and Crankshaft combined. Maybe 50, depending on how long Crankshaft’s been around. All I know is it feels like they both predate “The Yellow Kid”.

  115. The Ghost of Jarrod
    March 27th, 2009 at 3:01 am [Reply]

    So what’s the over/under on Masky McDeath’s appearance? I’m guessing April of 2012. You see, Funky will have to have cancer, get surgery, get to deal with the hi-larious incontinence and impotence issues, and then have a brief period when he feels better, only to find the cancer spread to his pancreas.

    That’s going to take some time if Batiuk is going to really show the agony. Which he does. For Batiuk is a vengeful God.

  116. Sheila Sternwell
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:07 am [Reply]

    Mostly I’m thinking pubic lice.

    I can’t think of a single strip that wouldn’t be improved by the addition of pubic lice.

    Well, maybe Garfield.

  117. SayItWithWookies
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:38 am [Reply]

    I’m not sure which is a stronger sign that Funky’s god hates humanity — that everyone gets cancer and dies, or that prostate cancer takes a long, long time to kill.

  118. mordock999
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:45 am [Reply]

    Todays’ Luann 03/27/09

    The GOOD News IS Toni’s BACK and she brought a “present”.

    The BAD News is THAT “present” is IN the Car.

    Lets just HOPE it ain’t Dirk….,


    DEATH to …, well YOU know!

  119. Draktyr
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:46 am [Reply]

    pubic lice are small, biting insectoid creatures that insinuate themselves into people’s bodies, get under people’s skin, annoy them, feed off their blood and cause turmoil in their lives.

    Sounds a lot like Mary Worth…

  120. Karl
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:58 am [Reply]

    Can’t something be done about Funky W’s author/artist/drear-meister? Isn’t this the sort of thing involuntary-commitment laws were written for?

  121. Deni D.
    March 27th, 2009 at 5:38 am [Reply]

    OMG, I can’t believe you didn’t include yesterday’s (Thursday’s) Rex Morgan, MD: June talking about her “BUNS” with the sailor!!!!

  122. John C Fremont
    March 27th, 2009 at 6:22 am [Reply]

    RMMD – Great, now I’m going to be singing The Sweet’s “Little Willie” all day. No, wait, that’s a good thing. Well, for me. I would, however, like to take this opportunity to apologize in advance to my coworkers. I’ll bet that’s just going to steam their buns!

  123. Talking Squirrel
    March 27th, 2009 at 7:05 am [Reply]

    Batiuk is a member of the same club that claimed Frank Zappa and Tim Leary? Wow, man. Like cosmically uncool.

    He does need a bit more breadth in the diagnoses with which he inflicts misery on his creations. May I suggest, for starters, Peyronie’s and ainhum?

    99 Mooncattie: Close enuf, by cracky!

    More information about pubic lice can be found on the internet.

  124. mojo
    March 27th, 2009 at 7:15 am [Reply]

    Ted’s whining all week in Mary Worth had me thinking he was really auditioning for Funky Winkerbean. “Waah! My money manager ran off with all my money! Waah! I lost my job! Waah! I can’t give your father the donation I promised him! Waah! You’re going to leave me just ‘cuz I’m a pencil-stasched loser, aren’t you?”

    The Funky director liked his energy, but Ted was ultimately rejected. The director told him to “contact me when you get an incurable, painful, terminal disease–THEN we’ll talk!”

  125. Twinkles the Elf
    March 27th, 2009 at 7:59 am [Reply]

    Today’s Cathy: Did anyone else get the impression that Guisewaite has no freakin’ idea what “spendthrift” means? “The cost-conscious captain! The penny-pinching peasant! The spendthrift safari guide! The prudent punk star!” Um, which of these things is not like the others, ace?

    I don’t expect erudition, but come ON, here — “spendthrift” isn’t like a big scary SAT word or anything…

  126. One-eyed Wolfdog
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:02 am [Reply]

    Pencil-Stasched Loser, coulda been the big Freddie Blassie comeback hit.

  127. Whippersnapper
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    JP: I was tempted to say this is a terrible message, since the lesson Sophie has apparently learned from the bullying incident is that she should never try to be herself and instead conform to the crowd. But then I thought of what a boring, annoying know-it-all Sophie is, and I have to agree that she should not try to be herself.

    Luann: OMG, did Brad just say something relatively smooth to Toni? Sure it was cheesy, but it was light years better than his usual stammering and drooling and accidental invitations to nudist resorts. Could it be that Brad has finally emotionally matured past the level of a 14-year-old? Nah, I’m sure he’ll screw it up in tomorrow’s strip.

    MC: It’s mean, but Rex is right. You can’t argue that.

  128. One-eyed Wolfdog
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:45 am [Reply]

    That man in Dick Tracy is holding a wee, tiny Apple IIc to his ear. This is the least worst thing about Dick Tracy today.

  129. kalki
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    9CL: Interesting that pre-marital sex is considered the same as a proposal of marriage to these with religious leanings, but that they turn a blind eye to the homosexuality rampant in Edda’s abode….It is like a gay Catholicism.

    Archie: Ah, the third panel is an allegory…Archie and Veronica bumping means that men and women are opposite to each other, the dumped books on the floor is a statement about the slow extinction of book reading in our schools and the unseen person kicking the paint container means that somebody soon will die (ie kick the bucket)….place your bets…I am thinking Betty and a lump in her boob.

    Blondie: Huh? Nothing in the box? Not even an anonymous dildo? That’s what I would put in the box. It says a lot without leading back to the person who put it there…as long as it was unused to begin with.

    Crank: Yes, we all know…the squirrels and birds will arrive first to claim the seed as their own. yuck yuck

    DTM: “Fuck off, little boy. Can’t you see me purring here!?”

    CircusJerk: Nope. Just ebola.

    FW: All this needs now is Cory fighting with his dad and for Holly to say she’s been having an affair and then we can get going with Funky’s murder-suicide storyline.

    GA: I’m tuning out of this one again for a while…something tells me a flashback storyline is about to start and I already don’t care, so I will use the time for something more important like banjo practice.

    Luann: Here we go again. More of Toni cockteasing Brad while TJ brags about his torch job of the last house and at the same time kind of threatens more arson to come.

    S-M: “So, I guess I’ll give up now and go hang from the wall outside MJ’s window and watch her breathing make her boobs go up and down as usual.”

  130. Brick Bradford
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:47 am [Reply]

    RMMD How did Sarah know “Willy” had a “chubby”–oh, just reread it, never mind.

    DT&MW Hmmmmm. A pencil moustached weasel who’s trying to take all of BOs’ money is calling him on the phone. Meanwhile over in MW a pencil moustached weasel with money problems has to leave the room for a phone call. Coincidence? Crossover? Reality shattering collision of alternative earths?

    Did these people have bathing suits on under their clothes or does the Phantom really wear purple briefs?

    MT Who’s stupider? The crook, who’s trying to avoid suspicion by stalking a kid in the middle of the freaking forest and offering him 500 clams for the modern day equivalent of a Kodak Brownie, the kid, for not running away screaming after this creepy looking guy followed him home to offer him a fortune for his little camera, or the writer for coming up with this nonsense?

  131. Brick Bradford
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:47 am [Reply]

    130 I clearly meant the Phantom in snark 3.

  132. The Spectacular Spider-Brick
    March 27th, 2009 at 8:56 am [Reply]

    A3G: Anyone else think Kenley here doesn’t get out much? The girl has no internal monologue. “So there was this time I saw this squirrel in the park and he had a piece of cheese. And I thought ‘huh, he must think he’s a mouse.’ Did you ever see a eclipse? I did. Tyler likes birds. Remember ‘Duck Tales’? Those were funny. Who thought of the word ‘spleen’? Tyler’s hanging out the window. This apartment’s pretty high up, isn’t it? If Dora the Explorer played the recorder it would be Dora the Explorer’s Recorder. I saw this guy who I thought was my Daddy but it was just some blonde guy in a blue jacket. Why are you taking so many pills? I’m a Libra. Did you see where Tyler went?”

    Three things I hate about (WT)DT: (1) “Back off, woman. I just joined Ed Crankshaft’s garden club.” (2) Eyejack? What’s his first name, Won? (3) So that’s Ted Confey’s game! Putting on a face-card costume and scamming nickels from broom-faced hillbillies!

    Garfield: “I knew I shouldn’t have volunteered to pull the train.”

    thorps. He couldn’t have been that professional of a criminal if he confessed to crimes he wasn’t even suspected of. Who was the arresting officer, Gene Hunt?

    Luann: “It’s in the car. It’s called a ‘humjob.’”

    MW: Ted’s phone would be more convincing if it didn’t play snippets of dialogue from Elmo and Cookie Monster when you press the buttons. “Why, yes, I do like the number 6! Thanks for asking, Grov- uh, Mr. Smith!”

    Mutts: Clip and save panel 3 to append to any future installments of Marvin‘s “Belly Laffs.”

    PMP: First one I’ve seen that was really funny.

    6C: Is the refrigerator note the cartoonist’s answer to the question for her significant other?

  133. One-eyed Wolfdog
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:02 am [Reply]

    Sherman’s Lagoon had a pretty clever self-ref today.

  134. Gene
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:03 am [Reply]

    Luann – I’m guessing that TJ “warmed” the house by dropping a stinking duece and not spraying. Of course Brad would rather stay in the house than get a little back seat action so maybe t doesn’t smell that bad. Who am I kidding, for the next week Brad will nervously hope that Toni doesn’t think it’s him that stunk up the house and will ultimately shit himself in the process. ACK!!!

  135. Muffaroo
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:09 am [Reply]

    9CL – Why is Thorax wearing a wimple today?

    Archie – Everybody dance!

    AD – Bring on da funk: worms got cameras!

    DTracy – I still haven’t seen anything that makes me doubt my original speculation that this guy’s a one-eyed Jack. By now, we all know the artist is a guy who works at a comic shop, which might explain why all his characters have action-figure hands too small to control objects in the real world. Luckily, in this world, cell phones are so small and light, they float up to your ear, where the merest touch of a finger guides them to their proper place.

    FCircus“I don’t feel so good.” “I think I might be turnin’ into a real boy.”

    Garfield – Gerbil stuffing does not work that way.

    GThorp – “A criminal did it. Detective Slylock knew he did it when he told some story about the Moon’s gravitational pull making his hood fly up and make his car go through a red light.”

    Luann – Once you realize that TJ’s smile is a neurological artifact that has nothing to do with his emotional state, you can read his lines with the flatly tragic self-pity that permeates his life and realize what a miserable bastard he really is.

  136. Scott M.
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Funky Winkerbean used to be a “funny” comic strip? I mean, like, years ago? For the first week, at least?

  137. Muffaroo
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    me re DT: “…where the merest touch of a tiny, doll-like finger…”

    Mduke – “You do realize that I can now legally shoot you and claim I thought you were rabid, right?”

    Pluggers – I count five dim bulbs in that picture.

    RMorgan – Willy? Willy Gilligan? Free Willy? Nahh, he’s making it up. His real name is “Not Me”!

    S-Man – What can one man do about it? Oh, gawd, how poignant! Just think how much worse it would be if it was actually dark or something.

  138. Muffaroo
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:15 am [Reply]

    Zippy – Eat your raw fugu, Z-man! She slaved over a hot sushi bar all day making that.

    Bitter Scribe @83 – You’re right! I never want an experience like that. I’m glad you’re still here to tell about it. Gack. Gack.

    left of the pyle @105 – Sounds like this thing I’m hearing about where a totally spontaneous grass-roots group wants to teabag the White House. These young people and their wacky slang!

    John C Fremont @122
    Little Willy, keen to float,
    Hid out on Rex Morgan’s boat.
    Readers soon began to snore:
    Will was a “Titanic” bore!

    Brick Bradford @130 – MT: “I will give you $500 for this camera, child. But understand that one day, and may that day never come, I will ask you for a favor…”

  139. Doug Puthoff
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:19 am [Reply]


    FW–”In School Detention?”

    I thought all detentions were in school!”

  140. Crankshafts funky smelling corpse
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    FW: Again, can anybody confirm that Corey is actually the fruit of Funky’s loins? I thought the wife already had a kid when he hooked up with her. This makes Corey much more sympathetic, as geez, I’d act out too if Winkerbean was my step-dad.

  141. Calico
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    MT-the thing is, Rusty changed the memory card, so the one in the camera won’t do Mr. McBaddie any good. He’ll just have a bunch of poorly composed images of super-squirrels and otters.

  142. Calico
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:32 am [Reply]

    #132 – Re: 3G – Hahahha!
    Kenley obviously didn’t take her Ritalin this morning.

  143. Mel
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    141, Calico:

    and pubic lice

  144. buckyswife
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    FC: Given the craniums on these kids, I’d say that “global warming” is a pretty apt term for their fevers.

    SM: I’m grateful that in my city, a blackout doesn’t turn the citizenry into quivering lumps of clumsy fear. Because then we might have to rely on someone like Spiderman. And we’d all be screwed.

    A3G: So, Kenley is one of those types, huh? You know, the kind who casually drop loaded comments, and then just as casually move on to something else: “And Daddy talked about wanting to bang YOU, Tommy. What does that mean? Could I have some juice, please?”

    MT: I really want Rusty’s next comment to be “Wow, thanks, sir! I will never, ever forget you or your face. For the rest of my life, wherever I go, I will recognize you. I could be in the store, or school, or church, or, say, the post office, and if I saw your face, I’d recognize it!”

    (Then again, the crook has nothing to worry about because Rusty doesn’t go to any of those places; he doesn’t go anywhere.)

    Oh, and GarMar might be my new favorite comic.

  145. Calico
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:50 am [Reply]

    #143 – Eeeeew!
    Does Rusty ever bathe? Probably just in the river, and not very often.

  146. Calico
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:55 am [Reply]

    #144-I’d like to see Kenley in Family Circus, spewing malapropisms and bad jokes pertaining to Christianity, old people (er…excuse me, Senior Citizens), and the Afterlife.

    “Tommie, my Mommy says God puts every gray hair on our head for a Reason.”

  147. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 27th, 2009 at 9:59 am [Reply]


    Lockhorns: “Lady, I don’t even wanna know what that means.”

    DT: Aw, hells no! Jack is Eyejack, an actual one-eyed jack from the playing cards? Haven’t we already been down this walking talking face card route? If this is some kind of family revenge thing, I’d remind Jack that no one is ever allowed to bring Dick to account.

    MT: Elrod obviously wasn’t thinking of how the last panel would look in isolation. Or was he?

    Marvin: Oh but Jenny, it would give you so much material for “Belly Laffs 2.” Doesn’t that tip the scales?

    A3G: Ah, Health Flakes. Soggy enough to make children of all ages turn up their noses and say, “What the hell is this crap?”

    S-M: Here come the jazz hands. This is the part where Peter launches into his showstopping musical number “What is a Spider-Man Good For?”

    MC: Yeah, I think I have to side with Rex here.

    SFx: Bonus question: In which picture is the gorilla more likely to get an AK and mow everyone down?

    Luann: Is TJ making a sly reference to his burning the house down before? Or did he just fart?

    S4th: Ooh, burn on Steve Martin’s latest movie. Well excuuuuuuse him!

    Garfield: I’m trying to keep the word “gerbiling” out of my head. Trying really hard…

    H&L: With some dismay, Hi and Lois realize that their firstborn really intends to become a standup comic, and that they’ll be the test audience for all his dyingest material.

    DtM: “This is the last time I let dumb old Mr. Wilson talk me into posing for glamour photos.”

  148. TheCasey
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:03 am [Reply]

    DT – “ThisIsEyeJackAtTheCasinoAndIHaveToTalkReallyFastBecause I’m throwing my phone past my ear. Damn. I’m about to lose another job.” Also, TSS-B, I bet his first name is Juan. He has a vaguely conquistadorial look to him.

    HotC – Haircuts?! People getting haircuts?! Craziness!

  149. Steve
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:07 am [Reply]

    #140: I believe Corey is actually Funky’s stepson. If I remember correctly, his real father divorced his mother when she had cancer (of course, what else would she have in Funky-town?)

  150. Esther Blodgett
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:10 am [Reply]

    #135 Muffaroo re: Luann – And of course, now I’ll never be able to read TJ any other way. Well done.

    MW: Good Lord, can none of these people cook?

    RMMD: Thanks to the ladies’ incessant browbeating, if Guido does find the boy he’s going to pitch the little shit overboard. “That’s for making me look bad in front of las mujeres, amigo.

    SF: Ces is moving into Judge Parker territory by having the Forths spend an entire week talking about which movie to see. Next: Hil puts on an argyle sweater and Sally shows up in a tight tank top and leather pants.

    SL: Very funny, but hasn’t this joke been used before?

    FW: It’s funny because…Nope, I got nothing.

  151. tb4000
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:24 am [Reply]

    Luann: Toni has a surprise for you in her car, and by “surprise” she means blowjob, and by car, she means….car.

  152. spike
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:27 am [Reply]

    Steve @ 149: You’re absolutely correct.

    boojum @ 107: My sympathies. I can’t even begin to imagine how horrible that was.

    bats :[ @33: Yes!!! You’ve done it again!
    Thanks! Merci! Takk Gracias! Danke! Grazie! Dzi?kuj?! Takk! Etc.!

  153. spike
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:33 am [Reply]

    Darn those diacriticals!

    The closest I can do for the last post is “Dziekuje!” (Pronounced djen-koo-yeh for you non-Polish speakers…)

  154. gal friday
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:34 am [Reply]

    Lio has a cute strip today featuring the hell-hound Marmaduke!

  155. Dingo
    March 27th, 2009 at 10:39 am [Reply]

    My God, Tommie, if the cereal you buy is “Health Flakes” what type of vibrator do you own?

  156. Ned Ryerson
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:02 am [Reply]

    A3G: Tyler can’t eat Health Flakes. They give him explosive diarrhea.

  157. Harry Pothead
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:04 am [Reply]

    LUANN: What is up with TJ? What does it do for his adopted family for him to keep reminding them that he burned down the house they kindly have let him share with their son, Brad? TJ might be a smooth operator and a gourmet chef but he has only seemed to be one notch below the addition of Poochie to Itchy and Scratchy on the Simpsons – and may deserve the same fate.
    As for Brad, Toni seems to be a gal who is obviously getting her sexual fulfillment someplace else. While it is believable that Brad is a terminal virgin, Toni seems to be insatiable and does not mind toying with Brad – BECAUSE SHE CAN!!!

  158. One-eyed Wolfdog
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:04 am [Reply]

    Look forward to meeting henchmen Ace Ofspades, A. Strait Flush, and Chip Counter in the next few days of DT.

  159. bats :[
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:07 am [Reply]

    While I appreciate (very, very, very much) a new storyline in Pibgorn (I do like Brooke’s style, and maybe this plot will be somewhat more understandable because he’s producing five strips/week rather than the fit-and-start three strips that he had going with the virtual reality story), I really don’t need to see the illustration of a kiss that bypasses one’s tonsils and unties one’s shoes.

  160. Bootsy
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:12 am [Reply]

    At first glance, I thought Tommie was going to feed Kenley and Tyler “Death Flakes” but that’s what they eat for breakfast in Funky Winkerbean.

  161. Uncle Ritzy Fritz
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:13 am [Reply]

    #115 – I think the FW plot line will go something like this. Funky will next get a text saying “Sorry, we mixed up your test results with those of a Mr. Bull Bushka”. Funky momentarily has the weight lifted off his shoulders, and, while feeling bad for his friend, sees a spark of light in his otherwise dark world of depression- symbolized maybe by the slightest of slight smirks. Next panel shows Bull at the mailbox, recently-opened envelope in his hand, looking at a piece of paper, going “Son of a BITCH”.

  162. bats :[
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:14 am [Reply]

    These are one of the days (well, this has been one of those weeks) that I’m very sorry that Berkeley Breathed hung up his Rapidograph pen-set. Classic-with-a-capital-C Bloom County:

  163. Poewar
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:20 am [Reply]

    Funky’s junk… Funky’s junk… Funky’s junk… Funky’s junk… Funky’s junk… Get it out of my head! Get it out of my head!

  164. 150
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    At this point I have trouble believing that the comics listed in the “Running Jokes” section could possibly be interpreted any other way.

  165. Muffaroo
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    bats :[ @162 – Ah, you have a good eye. After having seen the strip around for a couple of years, this was the first “Bloom County” I found humorous.

  166. odinthor
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:41 am [Reply]

    Phantom — Winner of today’s gratuitous ass shot award, mixed division!

    Shoe — Gaah! Shoe is becoming Ziggy!


    What can one man do about it—even Spiderman?

    People in the dark? Helpless? Afraid? And you’re asking what one man can do? Oh, Peter—what happened to your basic Guy Training? You find the cute ones, chat them up, then sigh and say, “Dang, what’s left to do in all this darkness?”.

    Grin and Bear It — Wrong finger, Senator.

  167. Hibbleton
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:47 am [Reply]

    Wonderful artwork in Mary Worth today –if it were a setting for an “Outer Limits” episode. A group of diners, who don’t know how or why, have been removed from their homes and placed in a featureless void far removed from any earthly scene.

    H&L: yeah, a teenager making a lawyer-chasing-ambulance joke. Are these guys even trying?

  168. Comcis Fan
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    RMMD: I too was wondering, innmaturely, why they have a chubby Willy in the strip.

  169. Comcis Fan
    March 27th, 2009 at 11:54 am [Reply]

    Make that “immaturely.”

  170. Li’l Bunnë FooFoo
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:03 pm [Reply]

    Whoa, cool Wikipedia page, thanks for the link. And you know what? That line about “sexy people doing boring things”? That was me! I coined that! (A couple of nicknames ago.) I feel so internet famous right now.

    Mind you, I really was just describing the way JP had been discussed on this site already. So it is fair to attribute the sentiment to Josh.

  171. commodorejohn
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:05 pm [Reply]

    A3G – Can she replace Lu Ann in the cast? She looks exactly the same but she’s twice as interesting. Also, Tommie would eat “Health Flakes.” And we know Margo is a big fan of Toaster Tooties, but I wonder what Lu Ann’s breakfast preferences are?

    A.D. – What with inter-panels like POOP and SNATCH floating around, I did not initially read that as FUNK.

    BrS – “Cigars don’t come cheap, ya know.”

    DT – Wow. Just wow. Locher and Brozman, thank you for making me feel good about the way I draw hands, hands holding objects, onomatopoeia, facial hair, faces…well, just thank you for making me feel good about the way I draw, period.

    F- – I want a room like that.

    FW – Ha ha!

    GT – Ooh, a talking left breast and chin. Jack Elrod would be proud.

    JP – Sophie had an “awakening,” eh? Boy, Baretto must be getting a bit more say in the writing process of late.

    Lio – is just pure win.

    Luann – Yeah, right, Evans. Nice try. How many times have you done one of these setups, again? And every damn time it’s just an excuse to humiliate Brad so you can indulge in your shame fetish. If you think we’re going to believe this is going to be any different, you’ve got another think coming.

    MT – Not suspicious at all. No sirree! You’ll just vanish off the radar!

    MW – “Also, airline food – what’s up with that?”

    PBS – Awesomeness.

    Phantom – Aw, c’mon, Captain! Quit being so straight-laced!

    RMMD – “Also, he’s hiding in the garbage can. Don’t know why I didn’t think to mention that earlier.”

    SM – Poor Spidey. Without a TV to go home to, he’s as lost and aimless as the rest.

  172. Snift
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    Funky’s real problem is not the possibility (well, let’s admit it, the certainty) of cancer, but the alarming rate at which his head is expanding. Gigantism. I’ve seen it before.

  173. Fashion Police
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:09 pm [Reply]

    Ted Confey is a real disappointment, even for a slick-haired confidence man with a David Niven mustache. Not many men these days have the temerity to show up for dinner at a nice restaurant in a dark suit and tie. However, we’re now seeing his true colors: harvest gold and he’s foregone the tie. Clearly, the man has no standards and was at first simply trying to impress. Hypocrite!

    Next it will be a sports jacket from the Arnold Palmer collection and pleated sans-a-belts. Ted, you’re totally off my list. Ms. Moy has already used up the fiery crash on Aldo’s Curve, so I hope you drown in a sea of polyester.

  174. gnome de blog
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:15 pm [Reply]

    Has anyone ever investigated whether Westview, Ohio was built on top of a toxic waste dump?

  175. commodorejohn
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:16 pm [Reply]

    #173 Fashion Police – Bah, that loser wishes he were David Niven.

  176. gnome de blog
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:16 pm [Reply]

    If TJ were any kind of friend at all he’d suddenly remember that he has to go visit a sick aunt and he’ll be back Tuesday.

    Oh, and #155 Dingo: that should be a floatrider, at least.

  177. Li’l Bunnë FooFoo
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    FW: Ok, this has been bugging me. What the hell is “m-mail”? If that’s a Blackberry or iPhone, then Funky would be reading his “e-mail” on it, and it wouldn’t be preceded by “Hello, you have reached….” Or is it supposed to be a text message? Same problem. The first panel just feels like a really awkward bit of exposition to explain how Funky is getting this message. Here’s a less awkward option:

    To: Funky Winkerbean
    From: Dr. Stanton
    Subject: PSA counts.

    Bang! Done. You’re welcome.

  178. Fashion Police
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:24 pm [Reply]

    #175 commodorejohn:

    Even a David Niven impersonator wouldn’t sink so low as that ghastly suit, much less appear in public without a proper necktie.

  179. Rusty
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:25 pm [Reply]

    #174: The strip should end with the revelation that Montoni’s pizza is carcinogenic.

  180. gnome de blog
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:26 pm [Reply]

    Does anybody know if Dr. Stanton is the one who misread Lisa’ x-rays?

  181. Miss Scarlett
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:36 pm [Reply]

    Don’t miss Friday’s Lio. It’s mfy.

  182. kingklash
    March 27th, 2009 at 12:55 pm [Reply]

    Another new concept Josh has brought to the fore:
    Funky’s Junk.
    Can somebody put it back?

    As for Prune Tracy, the casino head guy is named Eyejack? And he’s dressed for the part, as per the M.O. of all Tracy bad guys. His first name’s Juan, isn’t it?

  183. Mel
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:17 pm [Reply]

    177, Li’l Bunnë FooFoo:

    In the Funkiverse m-mail is MortalityMail.

    MortalityMail is a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through a series of micro-blogs — known as batiuks — and exchange quick, frequent answers to one simple question: When are you going to die?

  184. Crankshafts funky smelling corpse
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:19 pm [Reply]

    #149 Steve: Thanks. I think that’s right. Poor Corey. Now I feel sorry for him.

    Of course, this basically means that the Winkerbeans are nearly extinct! Funky didn’t have any kids, and Wally’s progeny by one armed girl has disappeared, probably murdered by the comic book guy in some heinous scheme of wiping out all memory of one armed girl’s previous life so she can be all HIS HIS HIS! (Or something like that).

    #159 Bats: I see now why they call it Bigporn. The thing is just an excuse for McEldowney to draw tits and legs and rip off Chandler or Hammett or both. I think If I really wanted fan-service I’d just read Gunsmith Cats or something like that.

  185. Anonymous
    March 27th, 2009 at 1:21 pm [Reply]

    re: the wiki

    great, now we have a faq that any of us can update!

  186. queek
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:03 pm [Reply]

    Lio: full of awesome and win! (and shout-outs)

    Stripybutt & Kidz: has clearly heard about yellowjkt’s contests.

    JumpStart: I want to see the Earth-Cinemax version of this story arc.

    Pibgorn: ummmm, urm, I’ll be in my bunk. . . . .

    F(argo)-: another wonderfully timed strip

    Hilburn, you unspeakable HACK! Hands Off the MUPPETS!!!! *rage*

  187. thurston unger
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:11 pm [Reply]

    FW: If the main character dies will the strip die, too? Please?

  188. bats :[
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:34 pm [Reply]

    170. LBF: it’s not that you *feel* internet famous…it’s that you *are* internet famous! Ooooh, the glamour!

  189. gal friday
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:45 pm [Reply]

    No, “m-mail” is for “Masky McDeath-mail”

  190. David Niven's Ghost
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:46 pm [Reply]

    I really resent these remarks suggesting Ted Confey looks or dresses anything like me . . .

  191. bats :[
    March 27th, 2009 at 2:53 pm [Reply]

    169. Comcis Fan: you’re never immature if you catch and fix your misspellings (screen-name notwithstanding ;). And I appreciate a good sophomoric comment:

  192. Winky's Spleen
    March 27th, 2009 at 3:13 pm [Reply]

    gal friday #154 – Y’know, I was wondering if today’s Lio was a tribute to this site. I like to think it is.

  193. CanuckDownSouth
    March 27th, 2009 at 3:27 pm [Reply]

    Rex Morgan, Lost Child Locator well, he’s sure not finding any *disease causes* So just how likely *are* kids to describe a 6-yr-old as “kind of cute”? Maybe think it sometimes, especially about little babies, but as a normal way of classifying other kids… Does this veer dangerously into Michael Patterson territory?

  194. Gal Friday
    March 27th, 2009 at 3:36 pm [Reply]

    S-M: “What can one man do? Even Spider-Man?


  195. Gal Friday
    March 27th, 2009 at 3:37 pm [Reply]

    #192 Winky’s Spleen–I think so, too.

  196. Comcis Fan
    March 27th, 2009 at 3:46 pm [Reply]

    #191 Thank you, Bats! I am honored! I’ve never had my immaturity so enshrined. I’m all a-giggle. Now I have to reveal my secret Comcis Fan identity to my husband so I can show this to him.

  197. Esther Blodgett
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:01 pm [Reply]

    #191 bats :[ : That’s hilarious, even dead sober!

  198. Bootsy
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:17 pm [Reply]

    Ah, Phantom, now that’s what I’m talkin’ about! Mmmmm…Phantom ass…

  199. Baka Gaijin
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:30 pm [Reply]

    #174 commodorejohn: Toaster Tooties? My FAVorite! Look at the new product in the line:

    From the makers of Toaster Tooties comes the newest Georgia O’Keefe inspired breakfast food: Lesb-O’s. Just like your favorite breakfast bread, only smaller!

  200. Marthas Rolling Pin
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:40 pm [Reply]

    Hi Mark Tatulli, we know you’re lurking! Great stuff today.

  201. tb4000
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:47 pm [Reply]

    I normally don’t say things like this, but today’s Pibgorn was hot as hell.

  202. UncleJeff
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:49 pm [Reply]

    Attention technically advanced Curmudgeons!
    Could someone please get a picture of a phone with Old School Allie Cat’s “U may hv CNCR n yr nutz. Plz call” text message to our Pope so he can have it on the next COTW?

    Jackuul and the other new folks: Welcome!

    Between Funky’s Junk, pubic lice and another great new bats:} cartoon, it was a great Friday!

  203. Jumper
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:55 pm [Reply]

    There should be a name for that feeling I had when Funky Winkerbean was discussed. I had no clue. It was all some pointless strip that started long ago; on par with Zits or something; I couldn’t really remember. What was it..? Huh ? Like I cared.

    But on a hunch I Wiki’ed it. Cheez Louise, the author/artist (I still don’t care) seems to have tried to make some sort of serious flipping thing out of it or something. What a black hole of pointlessness. Because no cartoonist can commit suicide live on the funny pages. As it seems he (they? her? it?) would like to.

  204. Artist formerly known as Ben
    March 27th, 2009 at 4:56 pm [Reply]

    There’s been a lot of talk about Funky’s junk today, but we still haven’t addressed the elephant in the room. Does it or does it not smell like mozzarella?

  205. Fashion Police
    March 27th, 2009 at 5:18 pm [Reply]

    190 David Niven’s Ghost:

    Well, Mr. Confey’s mustache is a poor imitation of your former one. Beyond that, rest easy, my friend. Clearly Mr. Confey lacks the wit to even worship at your feet.

    What I said was that even someone trying to impersonate David Niven would avoid that ghastly suit, and would have the good taste to wear a proper necktie.

    I recall one movie where Mr. Niven changed out of his barrister robes into striped trousers, a black coat and vest, and white wing-collar shirt with a polka-dot bow tie. Jaunty, elegant and casual, and, alas, not to be found in a cultural wasteland such as Santa Royale.

  206. Sans Sense
    March 27th, 2009 at 5:24 pm [Reply]

    # 203. Jumper -

    Something like this:

    The castaways plans for an intervention on Mr. Howell’s devastating acoholism takes a turn for the serious as Skipper suffers his third stroke in as many months. Hilarity ensues.

  207. Baka Gaijin
    March 27th, 2009 at 5:33 pm [Reply]

    #204 AFKAB: No, it smells like marinara. There’s a greater chance of infecting Greater Westview, Ohio by teabagging the tomato sauce than wiping one’s junk on the cheese.

  208. Baka Gaijin
    March 27th, 2009 at 5:34 pm [Reply]

    AAAaaarrrrgh! Why do I read the Comic Curmudgeon right before bed? Now my dreams are going to be all Funky. And Junk-y.

  209. Sheila Sternwell
    March 27th, 2009 at 5:40 pm [Reply]

    #136 Scott M – Yes, FW used to be funny. When I was in high school band the characters were also in high school band, and there were a few strips funny enough for me to cut out and put in my scrapbook. Now the characters are 20 years older than me, miserable, disfigured and riddled with disease. Those that survived, that is. In Batiuk’s world, this carnage is apparently “progress”.

  210. Poteet
    March 27th, 2009 at 6:22 pm [Reply]

    RMMD — So is anyone going to ask Widdew Sawah how the hell she learned the name of this mystery kid, and then, after finding out, berate her for concealing his presence in the garbage can and then abetting his escape? Probably not. Because everyone in the strip is secretly just as bored by this kid as we are, and it’s a real effort for them to pretend they care what happens to him. Zzzzzzzzz.

  211. Poteet
    March 27th, 2009 at 6:26 pm [Reply]

    # 210 — And the only reason I care is because of a tiny nagging fear that somehow Willy might end up getting adopted by the Morgans. Please, noooooo.

  212. David Niven's Ghost
    March 27th, 2009 at 6:46 pm [Reply]

    Fashion Police–

    Guess I got a little excited there–thank you for the kind words on my wardrobe. I can’t recall that film (there were so many). I will say “Casino Royale” had some sartorially splendid moments! Not to mention Ursula Andress.

  213. Gal Friday
    March 27th, 2009 at 6:48 pm [Reply]

    #211 Oh, Poteet, you are so right! That’s exactly what’s going to happen. Bet Rex pulls that “I-just-drank-some-RealLemon-straight-out-of-the-bottle” face.

  214. Poteet
    March 27th, 2009 at 7:05 pm [Reply]

    # 213 Gal Friday — *Sob.* If Willly becomes a permanent cast member, I may pull a RealLemon face myself.

    # 212 David Niven — I just Googled a few of your images, sir. Ted Confey is not even worthy of polishing your shoes.

  215. The "Quotable" Margo
    March 27th, 2009 at 7:08 pm [Reply]

    I feel we need some comment on electric blue slacks right about now. DN’s Ghost, tell us your thoughts on these fashion mainstays of the comic world

  216. zooby
    March 27th, 2009 at 7:08 pm [Reply]

    I suppose a device as common as an iPhone would seem out of place on Dick Tracey’s credit card bill. Coming, as it does, between “killing, crime-fighting robot” and “explosive perfume experiment.”

    One assumes that Funky is checking his non-specific “M-mail” (Malaise mail? Melancholy mail? Mirthless mail? Mournful mail? My God won’t somebody end the suffering Mail?) on his hand held PDA device. More commonly known in this world as a BleakBerry.

  217. Riding Bean
    March 28th, 2009 at 1:47 am [Reply]

    Dick Tracy takes another step into the bizarre. Am I seeing things, or is that a flamboyantly gay ‘Beavis’ of ‘Beavis and Butthead’ fame playing Tess asking after Dick’s iPhone?

  218. Hammertime
    March 28th, 2009 at 8:53 am [Reply]

    It’s obvious what the plan is: Funky will get prostate cancer, and Batiuk will get more attention and honors for building awareness of the disease, just like he did for “Lisa’s Story” and breast cancer.

    But it won’t stop there – look for EVERY character to get some form of cancer, teaching us the symptoms and the treatment. And of course, the horrible pain and inevitable death.

  219. Harold
    March 28th, 2009 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    What’s wrong with Dick Tracy? Shouldn’t the word “perps” have an asterisk and a note explaining that this is short for “perpetrators”? Why is Liz using a Rolls-Royce as a desk? And the caption box of “Elsewhere”: lame, fabulous, or a little of both?

  220. Binder's Butter Beans
    March 28th, 2009 at 10:15 am [Reply]

    “Funky’s Junk” would be an awesome name for a band.

  221. DocForbin
    March 28th, 2009 at 11:57 am [Reply]


    Fearless prediction: It’ll be prostate cancer, Holly will divorce him because she’s a bitch, Cindy Summers will sue Funky for more alimony at the insistence of her hunky anchorman boyfriend, Montoni’s will file for bankruptcy, Funky will fall off the wagon, go drunk driving, and plow into a tree, killing him instantly.


    Don’t you just love it when the assholes in FW richly get what they deserve? It’s Schadenfreude like this that makes this strip so damn funny and helps me cope with the assholes I have to deal with at the print shop I work for.

    Meanwhile, Glens Falls Post-Star Asshole-in-Chief Ken Tingley still prefers to listen to his bratty kid and not the groans of the people by ignoring my calls to dump the “it’s even more unfunny than Cleats” Tank McNamara and bringing FW back to seven days a week. If he doesn’t bring it back soon, I’ll picket the P-S’s offices until he does.





  222. Faster Than A Speeding Bullet
    March 28th, 2009 at 4:07 pm [Reply]

    #221- Yeah, but how do you really feel about that?

  223. Harold
    March 29th, 2009 at 2:57 am [Reply]

    I don’t think being killed “instantly” is an option for anyone in the Funkyverse. Funky will plow drunkenly into a tree, alright, but will survive the accident as a paraplegic with unnoticed damage to his internal organs. He will die, slowly, of peritonitis and kidney failure. In his final weeks, the hospital will announce that his insurance has run out and will withhold all pain-killing medication.

    As he dies, he will have a glimpse of Heaven as he is turned away and sent to an eternity of suffering in Hell – which Batuik will make the setting for the strip for the next 20+ years.

  224. schlimmerkerl
    March 30th, 2009 at 5:20 pm [Reply]

    Why does EVERY short story in The New Yorker start “…after her (his/mom’s/son’s) cancer was diagnosed…”? I then slam the magazine shut in horrified dismay. (Obligatory comic-related comment: the Roz Chwast cartoon was funny.)

  225. Sarah
    April 7th, 2009 at 6:52 am [Reply]

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  226. bunivasal
    April 24th, 2010 at 4:09 pm [Reply]

    Why would Dick Tracy need an iPhone? He has his wrist-watch walkie-talkie, isn’t that enough?

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