Hi and Lois, 11/2/04
Of course, comics should have a slightly (or perhaps extremely) skewed worldview, but they’re best when that worldview is internally consistent. It’s not just funny when people say wacky thing; it’s funny when people say wacky things and other people react to them as if they’re normal.
That’s why this strip fails for me. Not only is Mr. Thurston’s question about cartoon characters totally without context and deranged (were there any cartoon characters running in previous years? Ross Perot doesn’t count), but Hi’s reaction to this question is exactly what your reaction would be: wide-eyed horror. That’s not a joke, that’s just dementia.
Fun fact about Hi and Lois: Mr. Thurston was once referred to continually as “Thirsty” and had the bright red tell-tale nose of a drunk. Now the nose and the nickname are gone, though the slovenliness and dysfunctional marriage remain. Maybe his question comes from a bad case of the DTs.