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FoxTrot, 1/23/05

As sad as I was about the recent Baltimore Sun comics purge, there were a couple of bright spots for me: Foxtrot and Get Fuzzy were two of my favorite comic strips when I turned to the San Francisco Chronicle for my funny pages needs, and I was very excited to be getting them on a regular basis. But now it’s been six weeks and my reaction to the triumphant return of both to my life has been: meh.

Sunday’s FoxTrot is representative of my malaise. It took me two or three reads to get the actual point of the joke: Jason’s iguana has eaten Paige’s shoe, and in response she’s drawn an extremely long flipbook of her bashing her little brother with a mallet. The problem is that it’s not immediately obvious that the people in the flipbook are supposed to be Jason and Paige, at least to me, which led to several minutes of bafflement. Get Fuzzy, which arguably was my favorite strip in the paper as of 2002, has been even worse, spending what seems like the entire last six weeks focusing on the extremely un-funny running battle between Bucky and Fungo the ferret, with events grinding on at an excruciating pace worthy of Mary Worth.

But anyway, I come to you today not to insult these strips, but to get introspective. I know, intellectually, that I used to like the both of them. It’s been six weeks now, and they’ve yet to elicit a real laugh from me. Have they gone downhill that fast? Are both in an extended rut? Or have I fallen into the grips of the postmodern condition as a result of writing this blog and general Gen-X-ed-ness, whereby I can only enjoy things ironically? Because that would be kind of sad.

Still and all, Jason is holding a star-shaped glob of iguana vomit in the last panel. Maybe that counts for something.