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Loretta actually wants to see the U.S. from space (to get as far from Leroy as possible)

Beetle Bailey, 9/24/14

Hey, who says Beetle Bailey is behind the times? Look, there’s Miss Blips relaying the General’s capricious orders via cell phone, instead of by walkie-talkie or carrier pigeon or whatever long-distance communication method was most current when the strip started. And keeping up with General Halftrack’s slow decline into decrepitude, his new-style sexual harassment is indistinguishable from a request for a sleep aid, since nothing seems more erotic to him these days than a nice, comfortable nap.

Funky Winkerbean, 9/24/14

Speaking of new eras, New Era Funky Winkerbean features a pair of extremely sad sack teens who serve as our viewpoint characters for the teen storylines in the strip. I can’t be bothered to learn their names, so I just call them Sad Sack Hat Teen and Sad Sack Glasses Teen in my mind, when I have to think about them, which I try to do as little as possible. Anyway, Sad Sack Hat Teen has been forced by Bull to do time in the Westview Scapegoat mascot costume in lieu of detention, and I’m seriously wondering who exactly he’s talking to in these panels. Clearly the giggling cheerleaders already know about this head-rubbing thing. Does he think that they can’t hear him in there? Because I’m pretty sure they can hear him. Or maybe he just doesn’t think it matters, because after the game the High Priest will symbolically burden him with the sins of the entire people, and then send him out into the wilderness, never to return.

Rex Morgan, M.D., 9/24/14

Guys, Sarah, doesn’t just imperiously demand ludicrous things because she’s mad with power and people are terrified to tell her no, OK? She does it because she wants her family to live the opulent lifestyle they’ve become accustomed to even after her baby brother is born. And she wants a pony. Just look at her, wiping away a tear of joy, just thinking about the moment when someone up and gives her a pony for no good reason at all.

Lockhorn, 9/24/14

Leroy’s crinkly smile is usually supposed to represent “drunk” or “drunk and horny,” but here I think it’s supposed to mean … smug? Smug as in “haha, yes, I have thought up the perfect comeback here for her request that we travel sometimes, point: Leroy, and yes, I am keeping track of points, I have been keeping track of points for years and years and years

Soapy Tuesday

Mark Trail, 9/23/14

Hey, remember Jacob Hickman, the anti-poaching activist who sat out this entire Mark Trail poaching storyline with a sprained ankle? He’s still talking, apparently! And introducing his entire team of fellow anti-poachers, who also didn’t help Mark out. How long are we supposed to sit still for this nonsense? “I’m a bit of an survivalist!” says the guy who never had to shove a flaming branch into a hippo’s maw or behead a snake or listen to a guy with a flattop talk about his relationship troubles and also demand to be called ‘Dirty’ even once.

Apartment 3-G, 9/23/14

So, we’re really, really going to do this? Just a week of Jack and Carol talking to each other, huh? OK, well, uh, let’s look on the bright side, Jack promised when he left that he was going to commune with the spirits of the dead, so at least we’ll get some creepy action out of WAIT WHAT DAMN IT JACK

Judge Parker, 9/23/14

WHEW, at least something is happening in Judge Parker, if by “something” you mean “the Spencer-Drivers are going to motor off onto the highway in their enormous, gas-guzzling, almost certainly non-road-legal motor home.” Seeing terrified poors driving their adorable li’l compact cars into ditches to avoid being smeared all over the interstate by the Road Queen ought to be good for a laugh or two! By the way, Sam, you bought that thing because you and Abbey abruptly decided you wanted one, for sex purposes, and then the first RV dealership you went to was about to go bankrupt and so sold you one dirt cheap.

Crock’s bar for “whimsical” is set pretty low

Slylock Fox, 9/22/14

We’ve seen this courtroom drama before, and back then I was interested in the sad picture it painted of the animal justice system: the injured Slylock meekly giving his testimony, almost cringing as the bull and his sharp-toothed lawyer grin confidently, secure in the knowledge that this case is going their way despite the facts. Today I’m more intrigued by those facts, or at least the presentation of them here, and what they say about the post-animapocalytic world. Are we meant to understand that the Great Change altered so many things about the world’s bovines — not only making them sapient, but also transforming them from quadrupeds to bipeds and granting them front-facing stereo vision to boot — and yet still left them color blind? Moreover, how exactly did the entirely human urban legend about bulls being enraged by red come to be believed by animal-dom at large? Were images of bullfights perhaps used during the Bestial Revolution to rile up anti-human sentiment? At any rate, this provides more evidence that Slylock Fox takes place in the first generation of so of the post-human reality, as the animals are slowly learning about each other … and about themselves.

Crock, 9/22/14

Congratulations, Crock: for a strip with exceptionally crude art, you’ve sure managed to pack a lot of deeply unsettling emotion in the face of the Legionnaire in the second panel here. Does Butt Stew contain meat from a butt, or stuff that came out of a butt, or something even more disturbing? You don’t want to know, but he wants to spend the whole rest of the afternoon grinning smugly about just how much you don’t want to know.

Apartment 3-G, 9/22/14

NO DON’T TAKE YOUR TIME GO VERY QUICKLY JESUS FUCKING CHRIST I CAN’T BELIEVE WE’RE GOING TO GET ANOTHER WEEK OF THIS STORYLINE