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Red-hot pointing action!

Say, let’s catch up on what’s going on in some of the serial strips I’ve been neglecting, shall we?

Mary Worth, 11/30/06

In Mary Worth, Ella is giving psychic marital advice to 1944 and ’48 Republican presidential candidate Thomas Dewey.

Gil Thorp, 11/30/06

In Gil Thorp, Bill Ritter has done some sort of grievous harm to himself with a chainsaw, possibly involving the loss of a limb. But the important is that now Stormy Hicks is a real hero.

Gasoline Alley, 11/30/06

In Gasoline Alley, Walt, in what may or may not be some elaborate metaphor for his death and/or apotheosis, has been hanging out at the “Old Comics Home”, and having a high old time of it — until today, when he encountered the terrifying, heroin-addled, twelve-foot-tall puppet-beast they have tied up in the back room.

The Phantom, 11/30/06

And in The Phantom, the-Ghost-Who-Is-Clever caused a villain-killing plane crash with the power … of psychology!

Which is kind of a shitty superpower, when it comes right down to it.

But it’s still better than anything Spider-Man’s got.

191 responses to “Red-hot pointing action!”

  1. TurtleBoy
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:04 pm [Reply]

    MW: in re Ella Byrd’s latest client, I was thinking more along the lines of a post-Blazing Saddles, pre-Magnum P.I. John Hillerman…

  2. Steve S
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:05 pm [Reply]

    Frank Deford becomes the second Sports Illustrated writer to do a guest spot on Gil Thorp. Sadly, Mr. Ritter looks more like Frank than “Rick Reilly” looked like Rick Reilly.

  3. Steve S
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:06 pm [Reply]

    And Frank Deford, of course, is played by Grandpa Munster.

  4. Mikel
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:08 pm [Reply]

    Spider-Man has better powers than that. He just chooses to never, ever use them.

  5. Islamorada Girl
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:11 pm [Reply]

    It looks as if the two panels of The Phantom are being held together with a BandAid.

  6. Eleven
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:12 pm [Reply]

    “I guess that depends on how you look at it” ?

    “The good news is that you might be able to make a bit of profit by selling half Bill’s shoe collection. The bad news is…this is still Gil Thorp. We did all we could do.”

  7. Von Zeppelin
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:19 pm [Reply]

    Thomas Dewey: “And another thing, President Truman! You aren’t fooling me for a minute with that ridiculous wig and dress. I don’t have to take this from you! Didn’t you mock me enough when you waved that newspaper around back in ’48?”

  8. andreavis
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:24 pm [Reply]

    MW: Oh dang, I think Thomas Dewey is going to jump off that couch and kill the hell out of Ella. Then Mary can move up from meddling to hard-core crime solving! So it will either become CSI: Charterstone, or maybe an updated Rockford Files… wait, does that mean Toeby is Angel?

  9. BewaretheCreeper
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:24 pm [Reply]

  10. reader-who-posts
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:30 pm [Reply]

    “The Ghost-who-walks is not behind that horse.” – Old Jungle Saying

  11. Harry Paratestes
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:31 pm [Reply]

    MW: You know who Ella’s guest is? Von Zeppelin’s right, it’s Thomas E. Dewey, come back from the Great Beyond to check out his fortunes. Maybe he’ll kill Ella in a fit of pasion, violate her and eat her, in that order.
    (DT)GT: Why is Stormy sad? Because Doc’s about to say to Bill’s parents, “At least you won’t need to worry about him masturbating all the time”.
    Phantom: It looks like Wolf is carrying a protest sign in his left leg / paw. What, “Doorman Unfair to Animals”?

  12. Harry Paratestes
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:35 pm [Reply]

    Phantom: You know what happened to the left-hand engine that’s splitting off? That’s the one that traveled back through Time and Space to kill Donnie Darko. Crossover! I bet the Doorman was really Frank the Rabbit.

  13. Harry Paratestes
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:38 pm [Reply]

    Sorry Josh, didn’t see your Dewey comment.

  14. plumpy
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:39 pm [Reply]

    I don’t know, but that thing in Gasoline Alley is just fucken freaky; haven’t these people WATCHED Child’s Play?? Talking dolls aren’t cool.

  15. Eric the DiscoBoy.
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:42 pm [Reply]

    Phantom — If the plane has hit stuck into the ground like a giant Jart, then where is the explosion coming from? Maybe the Phantom is creating it — with the power of his mind!!!!!

    A3G — Is it just me, or are the number of wobble lines increasing? These people are developing some serious cases of Parkinson’s.

    FW — Is it (once again) just me, or is Becky slowing turning into that guy from Ratt?

    MT — So that’s how Molly’s been getting into the hospital — by fooling the staff into thinking she’s really a biped. Cuz, you know, anything that walks on two legs can’t really be an animal, just a really ugly, hairy kid.

    TDIET — So, is mom sleeping off a hangover or what? That would just explain so much in Scaduto’s world, wouldn’t it?

    Tumbleweeds — We talk a lot here about BC’s and Beetle Bailey’s slide into raving dementia, but Tumbleweeds is clearly suffering from the same fate, too.

  16. ohyes
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:47 pm [Reply]

    GT – Geesh! That dame accused Stormy of almost getting her son killed – when in fact Stormy SAVED him! Geesh! Women! At least, however, a rational man just has to tell her that, and she hangs her head in shame.

    No time to comfort her in her emotionalism, though, because some nice young man has a question, which must be answered with a riddle or paradox or something.

  17. Monkey's Paw
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:53 pm [Reply]

    As much as the storyline sucks, The Phantom is actually rather pretty to look at today.

  18. Concerned Citizen
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:55 pm [Reply]

    Forget Ella’s amazing psychic powers. Dent’s ability to alter time and space with finger-pointing is awesome and only Margo’s finger quoting can save Ella now..

  19. Mac
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:55 pm [Reply]

    I mentioned this over at Jason’s place, but what kind of person calls her son “my son” to her daughter, in the presence of her husband, the boy’s putative father? Wouldn’t “your brother” be more appropriate? I’m just saying.

  20. Monkey's Paw
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:56 pm [Reply]

    After seeing the terrifying visage of the puppet-beast that is Howdy Doody, I’m going to be disappointed if he doesn’t eat someone alive.

  21. Wirrrn
    November 30th, 2006 at 11:58 pm [Reply]

    PHANTOM: The Doorman…Dead of His Fear… Also His Plane going Nose-Cone first into highly flammable Jungle…

  22. Martin
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:03 am [Reply]

    Thomas Dewey? To me he looks more like Sir Laurence Olivier.

  23. topliff
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:03 am [Reply]

    Not only has lovable Howdy been turned into some bad cross between Chucky and Pinnochio, but Buffalo Bob has been returned to his native state, waiting for Walt, Mutt and Jeff to serve up some bison steaks at the altar of Clarabelle.

  24. Hannibal Smitty
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:14 am [Reply]

    I can picture the headline now: “Dewey defeats Ella”.

  25. migellito
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:29 am [Reply]

    GT caused stress to my mind by assigning what seems like so many names to so many people who look just alike. In only three panels. Who is this Bill? Which one is he? Is he shown here? Mr. Who? Who the hell are these people?

  26. Trilobite
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:30 am [Reply]

    Deep within the beige hell of Evil Ella’s Parlour of Doom, ace secret agent Thomas Dewey confronts the mistress of evil herself! Unshaken by her threats of blackmail, he lunges at her with the speed of a striking cobra, prepared to puncture her esophagus with an index finger made of PURE STEEL!

    I swear, Mary Worth could really kick some serious ass if the writers would just TRY.

  27. Mudman
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:31 am [Reply]

    That is one giant doody

  28. reader-who-posts
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:35 am [Reply]

    Personally I thought that was Ron Burgundy. By the beard of Zeus he needs some business advice!

    http://content.answers.com/main/content/wp/en/thumb/6/69/200px-WillFerrell.jpg

  29. Decker
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:38 am [Reply]

    I love the Ghost-Who-Uses-Passive-Agression’s jaunty wave to the reader as his enemy does a faceplant at 200mph on the jungle floor. Very Bondian, except for the stripey pants.

    And Ella’s “Don’t you want to keep your wife… and your child?” Is Mary Worth going to go Chinatown on our asses?!

  30. Poteet
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:44 am [Reply]

    Please pardon a digression. After the incredible number of comments this week, I’m wondering how other Curmudgeons deal with them.

    1. I’ve given up sleep.

    2. I skim so fast my eyeballs rattle.

    3. I only read comments about select strips.

    4. I only ready comments from select Curmudgeons.

    5. I have no life.

    6. I read comments on my employer’s time, as said employer richly deserves.

    7. I have a trust fund which paid for the special nutrition/elimination tubing arrangement that enables me to sit at this computer eighteen hours a day.

    8. I’m a Time Lord, and my Tardis makes this question irrelevant.

    9. The only comments worth reading are Josh’s and the ones I write, so I don’t bother reading any others.

    10. I’m about to be evicted and my family left me six months ago, but those are small prices to pay for keeping up here.

  31. Rhekarid
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:45 am [Reply]

    “Look lady, if I wanted the expenses of keeping a family, I wouldn’t have splurged on these color-changing hairplugs and a coat that can absorb all light!”

    But look at the way Ella is braced up against her couch. Chair. Futon? She’s ready and waiting for that finger strike, and once it makes contact a week from now, the fight is ON.

  32. Audible Sigh
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:51 am [Reply]

    #29, my daughter, my sister

    Also, an unrelated link to some Peanuts Cartoons

  33. Nyssa23
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:55 am [Reply]

    MW: No way, Ella’s client is really Brak’s dad from “The Brak Show.” Which, incidentally, explains why he may not be too keen on keeping said wife and “child.”

    And Poteet, you can put me down for #1 and #5.

  34. Tom Ames
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:58 am [Reply]

    #23 topliff:
    You know who kind of looked like Clarabelle the Clown? Aldo Kelrast.

  35. Derelict
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:02 am [Reply]

    We can only hope the Ghost-Who-Uses-Mind-Waves-to-Crash-Airplanes has some Kevlar woven into his striped BVDs–the hunks of wreckage that will be flying at him about 0.72 seconds from the last panel should turn him, the dog, and the horse into hambuger.

    Old jungle saying: Ghost-Who-Is-Hors D’oerve best eaten with touch of tartar and a light mustard dip.

  36. Mumblix Grumph
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:12 am [Reply]

    Ah! There’s the KA-BOOM! The Earth-shattering KA-BOOM!

  37. Da Scrodfather
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:23 am [Reply]

    Poteet, never mind reading, how do you folks manage to write so fast? 36 comments at 1AM! At least (so far) there hasn’t been a tidal wave of “Aldo looks like Captain Kangaroo!” magnitude. I can’t imagine how 236 posters can avoid beating and repeating any idea to death.

  38. johncomic
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:23 am [Reply]

    #6: “The bad news is…this is still Gil Thorp.”

    Hee!

    Oh, and: death to Gil Thorp!

  39. WAK
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:25 am [Reply]

    This isn’t entertaining, but given it caused my brain to actual exit my skull through the nostrils, roll to an abandoned Indiana-Jonesesque temple and dive into a pit of spikes, I feel it should be shared with the curmudgeon community.

    When reading today’s Mary Worth online at the chronicle, I had it positioned so Ella’s line read “You came because you wanted me”. I know it was a misreading, but I don’t think my faith in the sexual tast of 1950s Republican politicians will ever recover.

    Fortunately this will probably only impair my ability to take Mallard Fillmore seriously, so other than the suicidal brain, I think I’m home free.

    Still GAHHHRRACKAFOW!!!

  40. WAK
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:29 am [Reply]

    Er…sexual taste. The sexual tast of Dewey is indisputably first-rate.

  41. MGArchitect
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:31 am [Reply]

    On today’s (Friday’s) FOOB we see once again why cartoonists should not make up scenarios on stuff they have no technological expertise in. We are led to believe that the Kelpfroths are banging on the ceiling, but thats not what is happening here. When you remove a toilet from the floor, you remove the water trap that keeps sewer gases from escaping. The “Bam Bam Bam” sound is the sound of Mr. Kelpfroth spontaneously combusting, probably from smoking his cigar while he is on his toilet below. I’ve already taken my copy of the cartoon and added flames shooting out of the hole in the floor for a more realistic effect.

  42. Mikel
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:44 am [Reply]

    MT (12/01): YES! MORE BEAVER ACTION!

  43. Queen of West Procrastination
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:56 am [Reply]

    Vincent Price. Somehow (especially when shown in side view, but seriously, his face changes with every panel), I keep seeing Dent As Played By Vincent Price. And with his voice. And nefarious intentions against Ella. And, hopefully, all of Charterstone.

    But I’d go with #29′s suggestion.

  44. Poteet
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:57 am [Reply]

    MT — Ha, my comment yesterday was correct about the ginormous cat being a lynx. (Pats self on back.) Things being what they are in MT, it will probably remain a hungry lynx.

  45. Uncle Lumpy
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:06 am [Reply]

    #30 Poteet -

    An RSS reader with a separate folder for CC comments. Refreshed automatically every hour, or manually when I’ve been very, very good.

    And lately, I’ve been soooooo good! Mmmmmmm.

  46. Anonymous
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:10 am [Reply]

    Things being what they are in MT, it will probably remain a hungry lynx.

    Good. More for Molly, then.

  47. alsoReallySheila
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:11 am [Reply]

    Well, I think the Phantom solved the mystery of who’s responsible for Lost’s plane crashes.

  48. Sharkbait
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:15 am [Reply]

    MT: Oh, goody! Molly will get to stay at Lost Forest, where she’ll be as safe as Mark Trail can make her, just like the last time she was entrusted to his care. At least until she wanders off with her new buddy, the young beaver, who can’t understand why that lynx is so hostile. It’s odd that Jack Elrod can draw a lynx, but not a housecat.

    Spiderman: Peter Parker once again spouts his favorite line of dialogue “UNNNHH!” as he receives yet another traumatic head injury. Too bad that “spidey sense” doesn’t warn him about upcoming concussions, but at this point he probably doesn’t have enough functioning neural paths left to care. I share his lack of concern.

  49. Donald The Anarchist
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:21 am [Reply]

    #15 You have hit on a huge clue. Obviously that plane can’t have caused that explosion, explosives must have been planted beforehand! And the Phantom didn’t use ‘psychology’ to crash that plane, he had remote control of it the whole time! It’s 9/11 ALL OVER AGAIN PEOPLE!!! Think we can find out if that jungle’s really owned by the Carlyle Group?

    GA I think an over-the-hill, smack-addicted Howdy Doody could be just what this strip needs to get it back on its feet. Sorta like Bela Lugosi was for Ed Wood. I hope Howdy will be allowed to say ‘cocksucker’.

    MW This strip reminds me of a (presumably) true story I read about a practicing psychologist who specialized in dream interpretation. She appeared on a morning call-in show and the host thought it would be a great idea if she’d interpret one of HIS dreams on air. She had enough experience to suggest they try it during the commercial break first, which the host was subsequently EXTREMELY grateful for, as it quickly became clear that the dream related to guilt he was feeling over an extramarital affair. Needless to say, they decided to forgo the OTA therapy session. It does seem curious that someone with a guilty secret would go to a psychic if they believed in that sort of thing.

  50. Sheilagh
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:42 am [Reply]

    Huh, I had no idea Howdy Doody was a marionette. I always thought he was a ventriloquist’s dummy. But I just looked him up on Wikipedia and duh…

  51. art
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:01 am [Reply]

    The howdy-doody character is a direct reference to Bowie’s portrayal of his “Major Tom” character in the Ashes to Ashes video. So the junkie metaphor fits all too well. Not sure about that scale issue though, maybe it’s meant to be some anti-drug warning.

  52. moe99
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:02 am [Reply]

    Mary Worth is getting seriously weird. This is the first mention of extramarital affairs I’ve ever seen in this comic. And Ella brought it up w/o any foreshadowing whatsoever. Usually there’s about 3 weeks of that first, especially when it is a very touchy issue like this. What in the hell is going on that the paradigms are shifting and the shibboleths are being abolished? British tabloids have photos of scantily clad women to increase circulation. Is this a blatant ploy of the same ilk???

  53. Mr. O’Malley
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:22 am [Reply]

    36 Marvin the Martian. Good catch. I admit I missed that one.

    GA: I warned against this plotline. (Too bad comics are written too far in advance to take advantage of our collective wisdom.) Social Security lady is looking for Walt, but she’s about to discover that the Yellow Kid has been collecting since the Roosevelt administration. I hope Howland Owl will be around to sort things out. I like the potted palms.

    MW: For my money, this guy looks like Uncle Sid from the Piranha Club. And he had a good line a few days back–Eating her octopus.

    TDIET: More cephalopod recipes for Effie!

    Monty‘s newspaper is not running the same Spiderman as the Houston Chron.

    Pluggers is like Narnia. There are animals and there are Animals.

    Curtis: Yes, I’ve noticed that in Garfield.

    BC: I detect a vague spark of humor trying desperately to pull itself up to a kneeling position. But no … it collapses back into the primordial ooze.

  54. yellojkt
    December 1st, 2006 at 5:18 am [Reply]

    Poteet,
    Put me down for 1, 2, 5, 6, and 10. This is multiple choice, right?

  55. yellojkt
    December 1st, 2006 at 5:23 am [Reply]

    Meanwhile, over in the Mony-verse, Spider-Man is in the land of the Toad People. In our world, we could only be so lucky something that exciting happens. Unless LA is secretly filled with Toad People. Weasels, lizards, and jackals, maybe, but no toads as far as I know.

  56. compass rose
    December 1st, 2006 at 6:51 am [Reply]

    12/1 Phantom

    “Stranger! Did you kill our master, the Doorman?”

    Those awesome stripey pants have just burst into flame, so whatever Phantom answers, you can’t believe a word of it.

  57. bubujin
    December 1st, 2006 at 7:04 am [Reply]

    Poteet–put me down for 1-6. Not quite at 10…yet.

  58. smacky
    December 1st, 2006 at 7:15 am [Reply]

    (DT)GT: Woo Hoo! I totally called it two days ago: Leg severed below the knee, but still has a positive mental attitude. How sad is it that this may be the greatest satisfaction in my week? Again, the urge to mention “ass kicking contests” is strong, but I’ll resist.

    Oh, oops…

  59. Allie Cat
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:13 am [Reply]

    Crankshaft – You know, I’ll actually cop to that – my friends and I often gave the name Donner when waiting at restaurants…when we were in HIGH SCHOOL.

    And Poteet – put me down for #6. I’m going to try SO HARD to refrain today. So this should be my only post for a little while. Sigh!

  60. anne
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:15 am [Reply]

    30. Poteet — 2, 4, 5 and 7 for me. You are one of the select Curmudgeons. :) Although 4 doesn’t apply when I’m Xtra Xtra bored, or when employer is extra undeserving.

  61. anne
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:16 am [Reply]

    39. WAK: “GAHHHRRACKAFOW” — nice sound effect!

  62. Keith
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:22 am [Reply]

    That’s not Dewey! That’s HOWARD HUGHES!

  63. ohyes
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:31 am [Reply]

    Ella: “Well, Mr. Dent, you’ve got that angry-all-the-time, “Everyone listen to me and don’t interupt” attitude that passes for leadership, but if you really want a little business advice from a stay-at-home biddy, I’ll tell you: that attitude does NOT assure success. Let’s talk cash flow and capitalization. May I see your business plan? Can you run it in Powerpoint on your laptop for me?”

  64. Summerhouse
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:31 am [Reply]

    #15 Eric the disco boy – You move me with your use of the proper name “Jart.” I never meet anyone who remembers they were called “Jarts.” Everybody calls them “lawn darts.” (Now I’ve given the impression that I ask every person I meet about Jarts. I don’t do that. I wait for it to come up naturally in conversation.) My cousins and I loved Jarts. This one time, my cousin Andrea, sitting cross-legged on the grass too near the circle, caught a Jart with her thigh. After that, we always had to have “adult supervision.” Any day that starts with reminiscing about Jarts is a good day!

  65. John C Fremont
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:35 am [Reply]

    Poteet – Pretty good list. I, on the other hand, refuse to give up my sleep, and I have no access to the internet at work. This, of course, means going to bed early so I can get up early so I can read EVERY SINGLE COMMENT!! Needless to say, when there are already over 200 comments at 6:00 AM, I’m already working at excuses for being late for work.

  66. Roadside Sarah
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:39 am [Reply]

    Ella looks so threatening in her little red plaid jumper. I just want to give her a hug…and possibly some Metamucil.

  67. James Schend
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:40 am [Reply]

    Assuming it’s not a band-aid, or a doggy protest sign like other posters have theorized… what is that in The Phantom? It looks like a stadium light, but why is it in the middle of the jungle? Maybe that’s where they hold the Phantom Games every four years? I don’t know. Maybe it was roped to the side of the plane– but that just brings up more questions!

  68. Justafoob
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    Ok, didn’t Mike and Deanna make nice with the Kelpfroths? I guess they don’t like plumbers talking in normal tones.

    THUMP! THUMP! THUMP!

  69. John C Fremont
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:42 am [Reply]

    #64 – There were different brands of lawn darts. My uncle had Jarts, but we had generic “Lawn Darts.” I’m pretty sure there was another brand with a name every bit as catchy as Jarts, but I can’t afford to be late for work searching for it.

  70. John C Fremont
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:44 am [Reply]

    Yardarts! Can’t believe I forgot Yardarts!

  71. Squawk
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:44 am [Reply]

    MW: Yes, it’s perfectly believable that a presumably successful businessman would ask a 90-year-old woman for business advice.

    GT: Once again, three panels that look like they’re from three different storylines.

    GA: Dicknose, the Monopoly guy, and Garrison Keillor visit an animated Bob’s Big Boy marionette.

    Phantom: Er…I have no idea what the hell’s going on there.

  72. Ben
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:46 am [Reply]

    #55, How did this Monty character turn Mini-Me into his sex slave?

  73. comix
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:59 am [Reply]

    The meaning of apotheosis can be found on the internet, also Jarts

  74. man behind the curtain
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:12 am [Reply]

    MW– “I’m here for business advice! As for my family, frankly Ella, I don’t give a DAMN!”

    “Oh Rhett. Ravish me like Sherman ravished Georgia.”

  75. Messy
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:16 am [Reply]

    GA: The social secutity lady has just showed up and the comic characters are still there. This reminds me of the end of “silent Hill: the Movie”

  76. man behind the curtain
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:21 am [Reply]

    FBOW — The BAM BAM BAM is Mr. Kelpfroth shooting Mrs. Kelpfroth because she was about to tell the police that Mr. K had killed Lovie and shoved her hacked-up remains down the toilet. Now Mrs. K is dead, Mr. K will be off to prison and the young Patterson family will inherit the tenement house and live happily ever after.

  77. ohyes
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    GT – I see the writer follows Chekhov’s maxim for plot development:

    If you show a chainsaw in August, then you have to use it to sever a young man’s limb by December.

  78. Dennis Jimenez
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:24 am [Reply]

    MT – Hey, Wilson and Nolan missed a golden opportunity for a Nike swoosh and a Domino’s logo today. WTF is that on the pizza box anyway, and WTF is springing from June’s eye?

  79. Old Fogeyette
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:26 am [Reply]

    #30– Poteet, nice list. I’m basically 2 through 5. Since I’m self-employed, I only cheat myself when I read during work.

    #45 Uncle Lumpy–can you recommend an RSS reader that I might understand how to use? And how to set it to refresh comments?

    MT: AARRGH! I’m sorry, I’m just too worried about Little Beaver. Damn you, Jack Elrod!

  80. td
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:27 am [Reply]

    #27 “That is one giant doody” Just repeating the funny in case anyone missed it.

    BC: incongruous: how the beginning compares to the end of most “BC” strips.

  81. Captain Insano
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:28 am [Reply]

    12.1

    FOOB: Okay, Lynn. Aren’t you pushing the sewage angle a bit here? If we do a little structuralist analysis, we might ask how this toilet episode contrasts/interrogates the Lizardbreath/Blanthony pairing. In a sense, Lizardbreath is “clogged” with Paul, who more than likely has his “sock” stuck in Liz’s “plumbing.” But, like the plumber, Blanthony removes the “sock,” unaware that downstairs, underscoring all of this hot Foobian action, is Elly (who contrasts with the Kelproths). Elly, like the Kepledingdings, doesn’t want Lizardbreath to have a happy, normal life—hence, the Blanthony agenda.

    Yes, folks, you heard it here first.

  82. King Folderol
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:29 am [Reply]

    Ella had better be inappropriately spying on people or rummaging through their trash because, otherwise, her soothsaying ability is nothing but uber-creepy. Her eyes in panel two are devoid of that which you and I call a soul.

    I disagree about The Phantom. I think he scratched his head and made that plane crash. He’s got some kind of other-directed phrenology going, where he can touch different parts of his head and make stuff happen. Tune in next week, when Phantom scratches his right temple and makes a boy in Madison, Wisconsin soil himself during recess.

  83. Luna
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:41 am [Reply]

    C’mon guys! I still think that Mr. Dent wants to move into Charterstone and become the building superintendent, because he really is

    Dwayne F. Schneider,

    and any minute now he’s gonna rip off that suit to reveal his toolbelt. Then he’ll commence making those wacky, sexually harassing comments to Ella, Mary, and any other person in the building with a vagina.

  84. curie’s daughter
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:42 am [Reply]

    Did anyone else notice Thomas Dewey’s giant scary thumb in panel one? Perhaps he’ll work it like a claw on Ella?

  85. Luna
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:42 am [Reply]

  86. Amy
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:44 am [Reply]

    FBOFW has relied so long on the final-panel DOIIINGG!* look to tell us a joke has occurred that it isn’t even trying to put a joke in anymore.

    This is a nightmare! What’s that? A bad dream! Oh, you mean something like a nightmare, except less intense? Hahahahahahahahaha!

    No wonder the plumber looks less amused than bewildered.

    *the sound my ex-husband made whenever he made the mistake of reading this strip

  87. Juan Arteaga
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    About MW: If you ask me, that’s no Thomas Dewey, that’s Tony Stark, the invincible Iron Man! He is obviously seeking advice to capture Captain America in the first, and hopefully only, Mary Worth / Civil War crossover.

  88. anne
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:48 am [Reply]

    86. Amy: funny, “DOIIINGG” is the sound my husband makes when I wear a low-cut top or bend over to pick something up.

  89. Allie Cat
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:52 am [Reply]

    Hey – FOOB Monthly Letters are up and availble for your scorn and contempt!

  90. Grysar
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:59 am [Reply]

    So, this Mr. “Dent” is going to psychics for business advice, having an affair, and apparently using a false name.

    I think Crow T. Robot said it best “Hang down your head, Tom Dewey.”

    (On the upside, the years have been really good to the one time presidential candidate. Although he never seems to have updated his fashion sense.)

  91. Zorba the Geek
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:04 am [Reply]

    #49: “It’s 9/11 ALL OVER AGAIN PEOPLE!!! Think we can find out if that jungle’s really owned by the Carlyle Group?”

    Donald, that made me shoot hot tea out my nose. I’ll send you the bill from my Ear, Nose and Throat guy. Excellent use of conspiracy theory to deconstruct a comic strip!

  92. wendyinflight
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:06 am [Reply]

    I just wanna say, that the funniest thing so far in the comics today is the T-shirt in Dinette Set that says “Like a good neighbor, I like to stare.” I want to go on record as saying, I would definitely buy that T-shirt.

  93. MrP
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:14 am [Reply]

    It’s kinda interesting to follow the Phantom’s plot through the Curmudgeon blog like this. From what I’ve seen of this Phantom story, the gist of it is that the Phantom caused some evil dude to crash his plane by hiding behind his horse.

    This makes me giggle.

    “He’s not visible any longer! CRASH THE PLANE, DAMMIT!”

  94. jules
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:15 am [Reply]

    *rocking in the corner*

    I’m so glad I don’t read Gasoline Alley, I’m so glad I don’t read Gasoline Alley, I’m so glad I don’t read Gasoline Alley…

  95. jules
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:16 am [Reply]

    #30 Poteet, I choose number 8. :)

  96. Justafoob
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:18 am [Reply]

    Allie Cat beat me to the punch.

    Indeed the monthly letters are up and guess who goes on and on and on and on…..

    I think that Mike spends a lot of time in the attic polishing his Sheilagh.

    Of course, my life is checking out the imaginary letters of some comic strip people.

    **sigh**

    I think I will go soak my head for a while

    KA FLOOMPA-GUSH

  97. johncomic
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:18 am [Reply]

    #92: Weird. Just before I saw this, I was wondering why no one ever mentions Dinette Set here. It’s usually lame enough to be worth snarking at. I went and looked at the last few, just to make sure… and then I come back here and someone’s just mentioned Dinette Set!!

    Spooky! What does it mean, Ms. Byrd?!

  98. Allie Cat
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:22 am [Reply]

    #96 -Justafoob – For what it’s worth, I bet Deanna can relate to wanting to leave her no-good husband in a field to freeze.

    Fend for yourself, indeed!

  99. Prudence
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:32 am [Reply]

    #30 Poteet – I’m a #6. I have the good fortune to be able to work from home, completely unobserved by my employer. Sadly, as the messages grow in number, my productivity declines with each passing day.

  100. johnw
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:36 am [Reply]

    Not that I should expect anything different, but the “Dick Tracy” storyline is so bad in so many ways.

    – Diet Smith is head of a giant multinational company, the comics world equivalent of Bill Gates… and yet he hires a mad scientist without doing a background check??? He should have been tipped off during the interview process, when Dr. Froid was constantly rubbing his hands in glee and chuckling maniacally. “Heh, heh, heh!”

    – Presumably Dr. Froid had some nefarious scheme in mind when he gave DT the Alzheimer’s iPod… maybe disrupting the entire law-enforcement structure of the nation by addling the brain of a single detective… but at the time, he didn’t have a clue that Dick and Tess were inheriting a bundle. Now, rather than world domination of some sort, he’s going to settle for a measly 5 million bucks. It’s not quite Dr. Octopus living in a grungy apartment, but it’s not exactly worthy of a mad scientist.

    – Dick and Tess have forgotten the 5 million bucks, but seem to remember everything else. I guess Dr. Froid’s device only affects the short-term memory? Otherwise, they’d be saying things like “Who are you?” and “Where am I?” And I don’t think Tess would remember the bank’s phone number.

    – The distinguished banker fellow is going to dispatch 5 million in cash on the strength of a telephone call from an unknown person? Really, now. After he sends out the cash (in a cloth drawstring bag with “LOOT” printed on the side), he can go back to answering Nigerian e-mails. Nice tie, though.

  101. Zen Doggies
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:40 am [Reply]

    FOOB: Michael’s writing is superb. One observation in this month’s letter: “The living buried the dead.” Hot dang! And I always thought it was the other way around. Sort of explains some noises I’ve been hearing from under the floorboards…

    And this: “Speaking of submission, I am going to submit myself to the warmth of my bed, the presence of my partner, and sleep. But first, I shall check on the children.”

    Poetry. Sheer poetry.

  102. MGArchitect
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:41 am [Reply]

    #64 Summerhouse, #69 John C Fremont, and all:

    Jarts/Lawn Darts were maximum fun when you attached your glass Clackers (the old kind) to them and flung them Nunchuk style across the lawn at the other kids on the block or your neighbors. Croquet balls made good homemade cannon balls too. Ah, the nostalgia. I often am amazed I survived my own chilhood.

  103. cheech wizard
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:58 am [Reply]

    Today’s a great example of why I can’t be down with the Curtis hatas. “Everyone knows cat’s heads don’t last long” – beautiful. Say what you will about some of the lame gags with Michele and Gunk, but when Billingsly lets things get a little twisted, the strip is a gem. The little details in the artwork and the signs in the background can be wonderful as well – it’s probably one of the strips that’s hurt the most by the downsizing of comics over the years.

    Oh yeah, and Crankshaft’s “Donner Party” joke – ya gotta love a cranky old bastard with a warped sense of humor.

  104. Trout
    December 1st, 2006 at 10:59 am [Reply]

    MW: Wendell Willke? No it’s actually our Secretary of Commerce trying to get Ella to tell him how to prop up the dollar.( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Gutierrez )

  105. man behind the curtain
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:10 am [Reply]

    #87 — Here’s the URL to the IMDB info on the Iron Man movie to start Robert Downey as Tony Stark/Iron Man. Coming to a theater in the somewhat distant future (2008)

    http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0371746/

  106. smacky
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:12 am [Reply]

    Wow, again, the letters section of FBOFW is like watching a car wreck in slow motion. John reiterates what a great, boring, reliable douche Granthony is, but the gold is in this paragraph:

    The big excitement each year (if you have a workshop that is) is to get the next year’s Stihl chainsaw calendar! Whew, this 2007 one is really artsy! The guy at the chainsaw store gave me his opinion that the girls they have in the calendar now are just too skinny! He likes ‘em with a little MEAT on them! I had to agree with him to make him feel better, but personally, I like the new thinner ones.

    How telling… in light of his “meaty” wife.

  107. Uncle Lumpy
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:14 am [Reply]

    #103 Cheech -

    I really, really want to hate Curtis. The mind-numbing repetition of Gunk and the damn barber, the pointless and ineffably loopy “African roots” stories, the ham-handed Kwanzaa promo every December (Oh, God, here it comes again!). The systematic and mean-spirited deprivation of DMV clerk Dad’s of only pleasures – a hot wife and a smoke in his easy chair. Torturing Barry for bed-wetting.

    And yet, and yet. . . .

    The art shows real craft, and a sense of play. There’s funny stuff buried in the backgrounds. The characters are consistent, not yanked around arbitrarily to serve today’s joke. Remarkably, they’re also more complex than most comics characters.

    So I’m ambivalent. But I tell ya – I really, really want to hate Curtis, and will do so the first chance I get!

  108. Chet McCord, Wildlife Defender
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:20 am [Reply]

    Do you ever wake up wondering “what’s going on with Howard Huge today?” I mean the big dog, not the porn star. Okay, I couldn’t stand it any longer, not knowing what is up with Howard Huge, the very funny strip about a really big dog. I haven’t seen it in a long time; I remember it from Parade magazine, somewhere near Madelyn vos Savant. Haven’t gotten the Sunday paper in years.

    Anyway I googled Howard Huge and found the following:

    Hoest’s ‘Lockhorns’ and ‘Howard Huge’ shopped around (EXTERNAL ARTICLE)
    Synopsis: Bunny Hoest in an online chat reported, “At this moment, we have someone in Hollywood who has an idea for a live action TV series of the Lockhorns. And it will be interesting to see how that develops. He’s also the same person who has written a wonderful script of a Howard Huge movie, with an animatronic dog. I was really thrilled with it, so I’m hoping he can get some movie company interested in that.”

  109. AhClem
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:22 am [Reply]

    FOOB – Considering the size of Lynn’s reader base, it’s frightening to think of how many people are going to lose sleep tonight, worrying about what might be plugging up Mike’s toilet.

    My guess is that Margo’s sudden happiness caused a rift in the space/time/comics continuum, and the toilet is plugged with Aldo Kelrast’s head.

  110. SuperPenguin
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:22 am [Reply]

    #62 – I think you’re right about it being Howard Hughes. At least, Howard Hughes as portrayed by whomever portrayed him in “The Rocketeer”. But he seems like the type to go to a psychic for business advice. Although #87 has a point too…but I didn’t think Iron Man was the marrying sort. Of course, Howard has already lost his wife (did he have any kids?), but he’s back from the dead, too, so maybe he has a wife again. Either way, I’m waiting for Ella to steal his soul. Or at least say “I told you so” when his wife leaves him.

    Poteet – I’ll take #5 for $100.

  111. winky
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    check out the lady (nurse?) in the background of the 3rd panel of gil thorp … she’s incredibly tiny for the perspective. and what is she doing? is that a computer screen in front of her? then what are her arms doing — cradling the monitor?

  112. hogenmogen
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:23 am [Reply]

    http://www.chron.com/apps/comics/buildcp.mpl?v=3.0;page=2;quality=high;cpp=8;c=112;c=71;c=20;c=116;c=118;c=144;c=123;c=130;c=140;date=2006/12/1

    What is it with Scadulto and squid?? Oh yeahhh!

    Phantom is awesome. How many other comics feature exploding airplanes that burn for days? Dick Tracy – maybe, but the plot is usually so inane that erases any goodness out of – can I say it again – EXPLODING AIRPLANES in full color, no less. Even with the silly band aid sitting square in the middle of the vibrant one panel action.

  113. juggernaut
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:25 am [Reply]

    RMMD 12/1 – The look on June’s face is great in the last panel when she hears that Niki’s mom works in “some kind of lab”, but I think it could be improved if Mrs Tweaker MD had either a blinding light bulb above her head, or a giant “CHA-CHING!!!!!”

  114. cheech wizard
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:30 am [Reply]

    106- Lumpy – Oh, without a doubt – the Kwanzaa tales are insufferably pretentious, and some of the set pieces are recycled right out of the Honeymooners. I think Billingsly’s problem is that he feels compelled to do a regular “family paper” comic strip, when he was born to be the next Harvey Kurtzman and the savior of Mad Magazine. I think he needs to tell his better angels to go take a hike and do what he does best.

  115. B
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:31 am [Reply]

    110: She’s driving a Zamboni.

  116. Uncle Lumpy
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:33 am [Reply]

    #113 Cheech -

    Yeah, Billingsley, what’s it gonna be: Patch Adams or Mork?

    You got one life to live, man.

  117. yggdrasil
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:36 am [Reply]

    That Gil Thorpe is unreadable. It’s like Rubin and/or McLaughlan spun a bottle for each panel and then drew it from that angle.

  118. Proteus
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:37 am [Reply]

    Poteet – Well, I start with 3, then go to 4, but then, if I’m thinking of posting I run 2 so I don’t repeat what someone repeate what someone already said. Usually this is all during 6, but occaisionally it winds up 1. And as a consequence, I’m pretty much 5.

    Now I have to scan a hundred comments to see if any of the more brilliant minds around here already did this joke. Only 5 of them? Geesh!

  119. galfriday
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:39 am [Reply]

    MT: Elrod always depicts Molly with her lower lip jutting out and drooping–as if she’s about to cry all the time.

  120. Islamorada Girl
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:40 am [Reply]

    Once again, GT has let me down, big time. When a chain saw made its first appearance, I was really hoping for a Milford Chainsaw Massacre storyline with GT as Leatherface.

    This is one of the many reasons I say DEATH! DEATH TO GIL THORP!

    Thank you.

  121. MossMoses
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:45 am [Reply]

    Today’s Mary Worth is a lot like…yesterday’s Mary Worth. It is an exact repeat of yesterday, with no new ground broken, whatsoever. I like the way Clark Gable expects the new advice biddy to spew free financial advice yet gets all uptight when she mentions his sleazy personal behavior and points the bobbling Tobyesque guilt finger right in her face.

    The Mutts strip is annoyingly repetitious and it seems like the author is pulling a Fidel Castro, you can’t tell for sure if he’s dead or alive. Maybe his brother has been doing the strip for the past month… It has been pure sappy, redundant treacle for over a month now.

    “Molly is welcome to stay at Lost Forest”…Why bother taking her there? She’s welcome at the hospital and less likely to get bearnapped or encounter hostility beyond her comprehension there.

  122. AirForbes
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:47 am [Reply]

    I like the way Bill’s dad jumps to Stormy’s defense, but continues to call him “that boy”. I get the feeling that the underlying cause of the Ritters’ hostility is due to their incredulity about a boy being named “Stormy”.

  123. Da Scrodfather
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:47 am [Reply]

    GA– As if yesterday’s Howdy Doomy wasn’t the harbinger of the apocolypse, today we learn the Home for Old Comics is in the “real” world. . . .

    But–But *splutter* –Worlds are colliding!

    *Head asplodes*

  124. D.A. Pennington
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:48 am [Reply]

    Foob Newsletters.
    Here’s Grandpa’s newsletter for Dec:

    Mmmmuph Uuuuuugh Muh strained carrots
    Gggggggh mmmmm who are you?
    Mmmmmphhhh gug.

  125. D.A. Pennington
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:51 am [Reply]

    Today’s FOOB: What is up with Canadian plumbers? They wear some faggy overalls. No ass crack showing when bending down to undo the side bolts on the toilet. No 3-days of facial hair growth from being on-call constantly.

  126. Francis
    December 1st, 2006 at 11:53 am [Reply]

    Man, Ella thinks she can just waltz into Charterstone and jump straight into A-level meddling. Oh, the hubris! Any child could tell her: you start small, with business advice and maybe some suggestions about what spices to put in the stuffing, and you work your way up to extramarital affairs. Her impatience can only lead to disaster, and so I foresee that Mary will have to do some meta-meddling to rescue her, at which point the strip will spiral into an absurd Pirandello-esque hall of mirrors and self-reference. Which should make a nice change.

  127. jules
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:02 pm [Reply]

    My favorite part of this month’s FOOB letters is how Iris is reading about Taoism.

  128. MossMoses
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:02 pm [Reply]

    124. The weirdest thing about today’s Foob is not the lack of a plumber’s crack panel but the hole, right in the middle of the room. It is not readily apparent if it is even in the bathroom but the plumber is crouched above it poop sock in hand. There is no way that could be the hole for the toilet that he removed, based on the way it is drawn and why open ‘er up downstairs? A real plumber would snake down the pipe. He is probably just ripping them off so he can charge extra for the time he wastes down in the Klepfroth’s unit. Is it mere coincidence that the saintly long-suffering Pattersons are upstairs and the evil, lowlife Klepfroths are downstairs. It’s kind of heaven/hellish in the symbolism.

  129. Dennis Jimenez
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:04 pm [Reply]

    I actually thought FC was sort of funny today – though I mentally added, “and he turned Geppetto over to the Gestapo.”

  130. SmartPeopleOnIce
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:07 pm [Reply]

    #64 (Summerhouse) This one time, my cousin Andrea, sitting cross-legged on the grass too near the circle, caught a Jart with her thigh.

    This sounds like the sort of thing that results in an Old Jungle Saying…

    #30 (Poteet) I think you left off:

    11. Chismbob (er, maybe I’m thinking of “Husker Du”).

    Actually, not that anyone cares, but I scan the backlog with morning coffee (what IS it with you people posting at 3 AM?) and then check back throughout the day for a couple minutes. Fortunately, much of my work is: “do X, wait around for Y to happen” so it’s not like I’d be doing anything else anyway (well, except peeing, and I often do that here, usually unintentionally).

  131. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:13 pm [Reply]

    I think Michael Patterson’s “novel” is really just an excuse for him to escape into his bizarre masturbatory fantasies, as evidenced in this quote from the monthly Foob Letters:

    I take dictation, I write what these people tell me to write and as I do, I become each one of them. I enter their bodies and their minds.

    He is not only physically raping them, but mind-raping them, too. Michael, you sicken me.

  132. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:20 pm [Reply]

    Speaking again. As is my wont. Of Michael Patterson, the illustrious Foob. I counted 9 totally unnecessary sentence fragments in his monthly newsletter. Which I can only assume. Were for dramatic effect.

    Sheilauuuuuugh!

  133. MGArchitect
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:30 pm [Reply]

    #128 Dennis:

    As much as I hate to admit you are right and there is a little humor in today’s Family Circus, the joke is funnier if Billy would have also made reference to the puppet government of Pinochet.

  134. Brucker
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    #76 man behind the curtain sort of beat me to the punch in a way, but let me go on the record as saying that whatever is clogging the pipe will lead to the downstars neighbors from Hell being evicted at the least or given an extensive prison sentence at best. This is the beginning of the end for the Kelpfroths.

  135. Monkey's Paw
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:31 pm [Reply]

    #128 “and he turned Geppetto over to the Gestapo.”

    Yea I thought the same thing. Also, I have a sort of sneaking suspicion that FC is a favorite among white supremacists.

  136. cheech wizard
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:33 pm [Reply]

    No surprise that the FC kids would be familiar with puppet governments – they’re already skilled at torturing us.

  137. poppinjay
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:35 pm [Reply]

    From the FOOB letters, looking forward to the car wreck when Liz and Paul are scheduled to stay together in Mtigkwakwakk. I expect her to arrive just as he’s getting his reach around.

  138. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:37 pm [Reply]

    And yes, I had to go back through Michael’s letter and read it again to count the sentence fragments. Also, I am a Number 6 in Poteet’s taxonomy. I’m running samples on an ICP-MS as I type. Free holiday fudge to the first person to correctly guess what those letters stand for. No, really. You can ask my counterpart, Shannon, about my holiday fudge. It’s scrumptious.

  139. cheech wizard
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:42 pm [Reply]

    137 – Inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy – everyone knows that.

  140. Nyssa23
    December 1st, 2006 at 12:50 pm [Reply]

    Check out the FBorFW.com homepage! Elly’s singing a carol about “foobs dressed up like eskimos.” Or at least that’s what I’d like to think.

  141. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:02 pm [Reply]

    138: Awesome! Fudge for you! Do you prefer chocolate, butterscotch, or peanut butter? Or a mix?

    I underestimated the number of science nerds here at the CC. What was I thinking?

  142. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:03 pm [Reply]

    Well, spectrometry, but that’s close enough, especially since I don’t know the difference between spectroscopy and spectrometry without looking it up.

  143. Uncle Lumpy
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:05 pm [Reply]

    Spectroscopy is when you’re just looking. Spectrometry is when you buy.

  144. HBGlord
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:14 pm [Reply]

    #30: Poteet, i cop to 2 and 5 (but not 6, no, no, no, definitely not number 6). I’ll be right there, boss, right after i finish this important project.

    # 103, 106: Cheech, Unk, count me in the “too many redeeming qualities to hate on Curtis” club. I guess because i see it as a real throwback (do… not.. .make… the… then… someone… should… throw.. it… back… joke… resist… resist…). I almost kinda sorta like the reliance on set pieces, though admittedly some of those saw their debut on a cave wall in France. But, as others have commented, there’s always good stuff going on in Billingsley’s backgrounds. And he draws some of the gooniest-looking peripheral characters this side of Smokey Stover.

  145. Hannibal Smitty
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:15 pm [Reply]

    I want to read the same type of Spider-Man comic that
    Monty gets to read. But then again, knowing Spider-Man he was probably just sitting on a toadstool yelling at a TV, So I suppose it’s not a total loss.

  146. cheech wizard
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:34 pm [Reply]

    140 – Thanks, Non-Shannon. Though I must confess I cheated a bit – twas’ not nerds, but Google that you underestimated.

    I am somewhat familiar with mass spec, though, but only because a good friend and former roommate specialized in it for his Ph.D. Me, I was an English/Journalism major.

    Since this might be considered obtaining fudge under somewhat false pretenses, I’ll bounce some Jan Hagels back your way – it’s a Dutch cinnamon/almond cookie my family makes around the holidays. Since this is a public forum, shall I send my info through the contact section of Shannon’s web site?

  147. Douglas E. Iannucci
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:41 pm [Reply]

    LOCKHORNS UPDATE: In today’s panel, Leroy and Loretta lie atop a bed. Leroy is prone, atop Loretta, who is suppine, as they assume what is clearly the missionary position. A sheet obscures the couples’ nether regions, thus avoiding trouble with the censors. Loretta has a bored expression on her face. Leroy, looking only slightly less bored, says,

    “One way or another, Loretta, a man’s gotta pay for it.”

    There is nothing on the bed besides our frolicking couple, the afore-mentioned bedsheet, and a small rectangle which clearly represents a condom wrapper. The bed, along with its occupants, floats in a void, and yet it is unmistakable that the scene takes place in a bedroom. This sterling example of minimalism in the comics is usual fare in The Lockhorns. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to produce the link.

  148. Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:44 pm [Reply]

    #109: I think you’re right about it being Howard Hughes. At least, Howard Hughes as portrayed by whomever portrayed him in “The Rocketeer”.

    Terry O’Quinn!

  149. andreavis
    December 1st, 2006 at 1:57 pm [Reply]

    #97 johncomic, I think the reason not many people talk about Dinette Set is the same reason people don’t talk about exploding diarrhea– you know it exists, but it’s best not to bring it up in polite company.

    #30 Poteet, put me down for #5 & 6. Of course, I’m reading/posting from home today, thanks to my kid’s ear infection, so I plan to do some extra slacking at work on Monday to make up for it. Oh, and I tewtally wish I had #8, mostly ‘cuz Christopher Eccleston is hawt!

  150. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:06 pm [Reply]

    Re: 145

    Sure! He can forward it to me. Just expect a return email from someone named Leila. Because that’s my name.

  151. MonkeyHawk
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:08 pm [Reply]

    Poteet –

    I guess I’m a #2.

    A lot of people tell me I’m full of #2 albeit, not in those words.

  152. Justafoob
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:13 pm [Reply]

    From John’s letter we find out that Gwampah can communicate with just a few words.

    unnnnggggghhhh fuck you iris mmmmmmm eeeeerrrrr gwwwwwwwww no carrots bitch uunnnnnn eee mmmmmwaaa mmmmwaaahhhh mwwwahhhhh i shit myself mmmmmmmmmmmmm

    He actually conveys thoughts and emotions better than Mike.

    And while we are still hashing out the monthly letters, Apwil and “Uncle” Phil seem to be getting into cybersex.

  153. gh
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:22 pm [Reply]

    Poteet –

    #6. My overlords were clueless about what they hired me for, the upshot being it only takes 2 hours to do what they think takes 8. Leaving me to cry out in frustration 6 hours/day: “MORE COMMENTS, MULES!” Someday, IT will run a scan of my web usage and wonder . . . what is that site he keeps refreshing every five minutes? Must be porn.

    I’m actually at home on vacation today, because I was told I hadn’t used up enough days this year. I mean, why bother? But, that also means I have to confess to #5. Shouldn’t I be out kayaking or cross-breeding camelias or something?

    Anyway, when I’m fired I’ll have a new, hot, marketable skill — comic-parsing! And I owe it all to Josh, who’ll be hearing from either my attorney or therapist.

  154. MonkeyHawk
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:25 pm [Reply]

    gh,

    You should be out wrestling kayaks, working yourself up to the full boats.

  155. Mad Dog Rackham
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:36 pm [Reply]

    So the mind erasing thingamabob in Dick Tracy erased Dick and Tess’s short-term memory and they don’t recall reading the letter telling Tess she’s inherited 5 million dollars. OK, fair enough.

    Why don’t they just re-read the lette and learn about the 5 mil all over again?

    This really bothers me, as otherwise I’ve completely bought into the whole Dick Tracy premise.

  156. Albatross
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:37 pm [Reply]

    The FBOFW Wheels of Justice must be grinding the Kelpfroth’s lease into individual quarks: they were handed an eviction notice over thirteen months ago! Seven months later the landlady is still whining about them!

    What did she do, sign a five year lease with these people? Doesn’t she have an opportunity to not renew their lease on an annual basis?

    I need to find out who this landlady is. If she signed a multi-year lease with an unknown tenant, she’d likely also pay good money to own the Brooklyn Bridge, and maybe some nice property in Okefenokee City, Florida…

    Hopefully the landlady will find the Kelpfroth’s helping Paul and Warren stuff Granthony’s corpse down the soil stack, neatly wrapping up many of the most annoying FBOFW threads in one fell swoop.

  157. Non-Shannon
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:38 pm [Reply]

    Dick Tracy SUUUUCKS. Its current storyline is almost as annoying as the “generation gap” storyline Popeye recently dragged on and on and on and on.

  158. Lyman Returns
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:43 pm [Reply]

    For the record, the actor who played Howard Hughes in ‘The Rocketeer’ was the great Terry O’Quinn: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0642368/

    Terry O’Quinn rocks.

    Phantom-Maybe the plane was a special experimental prototype that had its fuel tank up front? Maybe the cockpit was laced with plastique?

    FBOFW-Funny, I had the same thought, that the Klepworths have some hideous secret and it will come out by inspecting the plumbing. My theory is that they’ve been kidnapping stray cats and dogs, sacrificing them to their pagan gods, and then flushing the remains down the toilet. I guarantee that will be ten times more interesting than what actually DOES happen. By the way, what’s up with the letters from the various characters on the FBOFW site? Sorry, Lynn, these characters are NOT interesting enough to warrant that kind of attention. They’re not exactly up to par with the cast of characters from ‘Hamlet’, you know, or ‘Anna Karenina’. Heck, they’re not even up to par with the cast of characters from ‘Cheers’.

    FW-Who the heck is this older couple with the camcorder? Why is the man even there? Wouldn’t any self-respecting straight man in this situation be fleeing for the hills (and going straight to a source of beer)?

    GT-I have a theory that Rubin and McLaughlin have a massive collection of totally random, unrelated panels of cartoon artwork that they just mix-and-match into sets of three and send to their syndicate, who have never noticed. I can see this madcap pair, wiling away hours by cutting-and-pasting panels, rubbing their hands together with glee, and cackling madly, knowing that sooner and later the syndicate will notice and the jig will be up, but by golly, they’re going to see how long they can get away with it. Really, it’s the only explanation I can come up with for the utter imcomprehensible lunacy that is GT. Reading GT is the comic-strip-experience equivalent of listening to a CD player set on ‘random’ mode.

  159. SmartPeopleOnIce
    December 1st, 2006 at 2:57 pm [Reply]

    #142 (UL) Spectroscopy is when you’re just looking. Spectrometry is when you buy.

    I thought it was: spectroscopy for girls and spectrometry for boys.

  160. Gattamelata
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:01 pm [Reply]

    Mark Trail: Ten bucks says momma beaver knew that Mr. Lynx was aprowl when she kicked junior out of the lodge. Another five says that they’re colluding. Why? I don’t know, but I expect Kelly Welly to stumble upon/fall afoul of their horrible plot. One can only hope that Em Stone will be brought in as a guest artist.

    For Better or For Worse: This strip should just be renamed to “For Worse.” Why even bother pretending that there is a silver lining to any of the many clouds that this strip generates? Also, what could be clogging the sewer line if it’s not Michael’s socks? My guess: Lynn Johnston’s integrity.

    The Phantom: He died of fear? Not, y’know, his plane crashing into a giant explosion? As long as we’re getting back to first causes, why not “He died of not knowing how to fly a plane when an equestrian on the runway dismounts his horse” or “He died of contending with the Phantom?”

  161. Wally LimpingBean
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:04 pm [Reply]

    The people in FW with the camcorder are the Moral Majority Special Forces Unit that lives in Wankertown. Previously, they tried to shut down comic book guy for selling smut to minors. The case got tossed out of court because it really wasn’t smut.

    Little did they know that comic book guy really is a selling crack to the kiddies and the comics are just a front.

    bwaaaaaa haaaaa haaaaa haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

  162. Uncle Lumpy
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:06 pm [Reply]

    #158 – SmartPeopleOnIce

    Spoi, that’s just dirty.

  163. johnw
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:10 pm [Reply]

    #157: Blame Rubin for the (DT)GT storylines, blame McLaughlin for the art. McLaughlin’s been a comics artist for a long time, but not a terribly noteworthy one. The top item on his resume was a short-lived superhero comic called “Judomaster” published by Charlton Comics (Worst comics publisher ever) back in the mid-60s. More information on Judomaster can, indeed, be found on the Internet at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judomaster

    So if he had his own series in 1965, that makes him at least, what, 65-70 years old? Could easily be more. He’s obviously spending his twilight years doing as little work as possible, recycling stock artwork and avoiding action poses whenever he can.

  164. anne
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:11 pm [Reply]

    I realized today that “Kelpfroth” is an unusual name, so I looked for anagrams that might explain it. Unfortunately there are only two:

    KELP FROTH
    KELP FORTH

    Maybe they are Sally Forth’s family, in the kelp unvierse. You know, where everything is made of kelp.

    Or they like their cappucinos with frothed kelp.

    Kelp is such an awesome word! Kelp. Kelp.

  165. Anonymous
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:12 pm [Reply]

    #153 MH

    I tried that, but there’s nowhere to get a grip. I’m thinking of trying one of those new canoes with the cup holders. You can really get some leverage. Then I’ll work up to Jon Boat class. If I bulk up, I’ll try for Pontoon.

  166. gh
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:20 pm [Reply]

    #164 was me. I really am at home and have to put in my name each time, it seems. That’s why I prefer to “work” from work.

  167. GoldBear
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:30 pm [Reply]

    Okay, since I found this site I now get up an hour earlier than usual just to read the posts. I also find myself reading comic strips I hadn’t read in years (and I was born before Tom Dewey ran for President). I normally don’t post, but I had to ask two questions: does anyone else comprehend “Ballard Street”? And lately, has Garfield actually been, occasionally, sort of like funny?

  168. King Folderol
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:35 pm [Reply]

    12/1 – Baldo – Sadly, today was the first day I found myself wondering what happened to Baldo’s super cool yearbook photo haircut. Thanks to Comics Curmudgeon, I’m not happy unless I see a box in the upper left-hand corner saying “Six Months Later”…

    Zits – Seeing Jeremy naked is rather disconcerting. He’s right about corporate America, though…this is exactly how Ken Lay got his start.

    Overboard – This storyline is going on so long that I can now picture the pirate making sweet, disturbing love to that mouse.

    FC – This joke would have been funnier if Al Gore were President (Pinnocchio/wooden/Al Gore…Oh Yeah!)

    RMMD – Unless June is one of those science is the work of the devil folks, why would the punk kid’s mother working in a lab disturb her so? Has she been rubbing elbows with the Family Circus, thereby leading her to believe that she’s inside of a Labrador Retriever?

  169. phroggie
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:39 pm [Reply]

    #163 anne

    I worked with a guy who ate kelp for lunch or maybe a snack. I asked to try some and it was like putting a spoonful of salt in my mouth. Yum!

    I agree that it is a great word, but as a source of nutrition? Not so much.

  170. gh
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:43 pm [Reply]

    #167 King Folderol

    I couldn’t help but think that maybe June was short-handed at the clinic — needed a lab worker — and thought she might be able to hire Niki’s mom away from the competition. As June drops in on mom’s place of work, hilarity ensues! Or she gets knee-capped.

  171. Amy
    December 1st, 2006 at 3:56 pm [Reply]

    88 (anne): Sweet! If my ex had done that, maybe we’d have stayed together.

    Just joking.

    Say DOIIINGG!, somebody.

  172. gh
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:02 pm [Reply]

    #170 Amy

    Love to, but I can’t. As it is, my wife gets upset when I can’t explain what I was DOIIINGG on the computer all day.

  173. arlo
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:17 pm [Reply]

    86 – FBOFW has relied so long on the final-panel DOIIINGG!* look to tell us a joke has occurred that it isn’t even trying to put a joke in anymore.

    Everyone’s picking up on the hilarity of dooiiiingg! in this comment, as they should, but beyond that this comment has the ring (doiiiinnggg!) of truth. The punchilne in today’s fbofw final-panel was weak even for the foobs. Some alternatives Lynn considered:
    My neighbors? …

    They’re “crappy!”
    They’re una-COMMODE-ating
    They’re LOO-sers.
    They’re a bit like Robin… They’ve “got to go!”
    More like neighboors!

    Yes, I found this on a crumpled up piece of paper outside of foob headquarters.

  174. Poteet
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:42 pm [Reply]

    #132 — Non-Shannon, thank you — that was worth snorting water through my nose..

    I haven’t had time to fully digest the horror that is Michael’s December letter, but from what I read of it, the poop sock smells better. From the treacle about his kiddies to the blow-by-blow of the WWF slapdown between Saintly Sheilagh and Horrible Harvey, this letter is WAAAY beyond ripe.

    Unfortunately, I can now envision him sitting next to Oprah explaining how he actually spiritually inhabited the body of Saintly Sheilagh while writing the damn thing.

  175. Poteet
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:44 pm [Reply]

    By “the damn thing,” I meant his novel. Though of course the letter is hellish also.

  176. Poteet
    December 1st, 2006 at 4:47 pm [Reply]

    #156 — Very good point, Albatross. I refuse to believe that the Canadian legal system really functions as portrayed in the Foobiverse. If it did, the homicide rate up there would be much higher.

  177. Gattamelata
    December 1st, 2006 at 5:14 pm [Reply]

    Re: 171, Amy:

    I’m afraid you’ll need to wear a low cut top or bend over to pick something up, first. There are strict rules about these things, you see.

  178. Gadge Cubic, Mole Preener
    December 1st, 2006 at 6:39 pm [Reply]

    #160: “what could be clogging the sewer line if it’s not Michael’s socks? My guess: Lynn Johnston’s integrity.” Nah, couldn’t be – that’d be small enough to flush right away.

  179. SmartPeopleOnIce
    December 1st, 2006 at 7:07 pm [Reply]

    #167 (GB) I normally don’t post, but I had to ask two questions: does anyone else comprehend “Ballard Street”?

    Welcome, Goldenbear, to the superterrain. I’ll try to answer your question:

    Long answer: Imagine if Pluggers and Zippy the Pinhead sired a child, and everyday you poked that child with a stick. When that child grew up, it would be Ballard Street. It’s like reconstructing Zen Buddhism using only Cliff’s notes of the Bhagavad-Gita and blunt head trauma. Some say it’s how al-Qaeda sends secret messages.

    Short answer: No.

    That is, unless I misunderstood your question and you were really asking does anyone else understand Ballard Street i.e. you do, and are seeking out your equals, probably for some nefarious purpose, perhaps recruiting uber-minds for some kind of hive colony. If so, I am humbled before a superior intellect, assuming of course you don’t go off now and say something that spoils the effect…

    And lately, has Garfield actually been, occasionally, sort of like funny?

    Oops.

  180. Len
    December 1st, 2006 at 7:32 pm [Reply]

    #22 — In which case, “Mr. Dent” is having his affair with Danny Kaye.

  181. Summerhouse
    December 1st, 2006 at 8:58 pm [Reply]

    MGARCHITECT – Glass (real glass!) Clackers attached to Jarts? Holy cow! That’s what they need in Iraq.

  182. Poteet
    December 1st, 2006 at 9:39 pm [Reply]

    #179 — SPOI, that comment is awesome.

  183. jnik
    December 2nd, 2006 at 2:34 am [Reply]

    GA- I just noticed: days ago, Walt asked if Calvin and Hobbes were still the newbies in the home. He was told, “not any more”. Is Walt now the newbie, meaning Huey, Riley, Granddad and Jazmine of “Boondocks” aren’t there? Maybe Old Comics Home is segregated.

  184. True Fable
    December 2nd, 2006 at 3:19 pm [Reply]

    Goldenbear,

    No, I’m afraid you are only experiencing a desperate attempt by your brain to find something funny in something that hasn’t been in a long time if ever, with something that is equal in lameness, also known as Comparative Amusement.

    It’s like thinking Cathy has improved now that she and Irving are married because she is theoretically getting some. Which surprises me that there aren’t more strips mentioning disappointing sex, but I suppose that’s a given and not easy to put on a mug, t-shirt or calendar to give to an uptight office worker.

    It’s like knowing Johnny Hart has abandoned all pretense of subtlety and now bashes readers over the head with Christian content, despite the fact that cavemen were several centuries ahead of the Nativity…. but this is the comics universe, not ours. Still, it’s a good excuse to bash! Smite thee, I say! Smite, smite, SMITE!!

    It’s like saying the Family Circus is more amusing than a blank sheet of paper, although that is a strain on reality.

    For the comics-impaired, newly arrived from Television-land, it’s like thinking Ugly Betty is the wittiest, hippest thing on TV now that Friends is gone.

    gah.

  185. Ben
    December 2nd, 2006 at 10:22 pm [Reply]

    A3G: So they’re really going with “Maynard” as the name of that icky kid with the goatee. Really. Working the classic sitcom angle, are we? In that case, I suggesst renaming Blaze as “Barney Fife.”

  186. Lord Haw Haw
    December 3rd, 2006 at 1:27 am [Reply]

    On the subject of dangerous old toys, does anyone remember the little fireworks that were about the same size, shape and colors as Trix cereal (can you see where this is going?).

    You’d hurl them at the sidewalk and they’d explode with a nice little bang. They were banned in the mid ’60s because little kids were eating them, mistaking them for… Trix cereal.

    They were fun. What the hell were they called?

  187. Craig Shergold
    December 3rd, 2006 at 2:36 am [Reply]

    Y’know who looks like Howdy Doody? Angela Lansbury

  188. Craig Shergold
    December 3rd, 2006 at 3:05 am [Reply]

    183: Black people into the Old Folks’ Home? Next thing you know, there will be a Jew in a comic strip.

  189. moe99
    December 3rd, 2006 at 4:15 am [Reply]

    186: They were called poppers. Speaking of another kind of popper, it looks like the kid’s mom in Rex Morgan MD blew herself up in the meth lab. Who is going to adopt the kid? Will it be June and Rex or that woman who is married to the Brit whose family doesn’t even know about her?

  190. qedni tagxbi
    June 23rd, 2007 at 3:09 pm [Reply]

    vlytw nslzhec ibvalht tncsy abcs nvidefxw vmjhbzak

  191. rapid turtle
    October 23rd, 2008 at 2:16 am [Reply]

    105: speaking from the future, I would like to say:

    That movie was totally awesome

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