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Mark Trail, 4/25/08

Here, let me recap for you everything that’s happened in this strip since I last mentioned it a month ago: little Madeline started letting her dog Bill just roam around the neighborhood, because she is a moron, and the evil dognappers dognapped him, leaving Madeline sad, which she deserves. Some might say that I’m being too hard on a little girl, and that her mother bears some of the blame for not letting her know that people don’t just let their dogs roam free through neat suburban neighborhoods because they tend to urinate and/or defecate on your (or the neighbors’) lawn, or run away, or get hit by cars, or, on planet Mark Trail, get stolen by dognappers and held for ransom, what the heck. But shouldn’t Madeline have noticed that when Mommy let Daddy roam free at night, eventually he never came back? C’mon, kid, you’ve got to learn from your family’s past mistakes.

Anyway, the reason I’m even bothering with this strip is that Mark Trail apparently now has a cell phone. The thought of him using any technology developed after 1955 confuses and terrifies me, which means that I’m glad to see that the actual illustration involves him talking on his motel’s black rotary phone, as God intended.

Gasoline Alley, 4/25/08

I’m not even going to pretend that I understand exactly what’s going on in Gasoline Alley — that’s what Going Antisane is for. All I can tell you is that it involves the dude with glasses, who is an over-the-top parody of some kind of wealthy college boy from the 1930s, marrying into a clan of sassy hillbillies — except that his fiancée is actually a blonde, not the brunette he’s smooching here mere moments before the ceremony begins; the kissee is actually his fiancée’s sister, or cousin, or … well, given the rustic setting of the action, I think we can safely file her under the category of “kin.” None of this is really important for my main point, though, which is SWEET JESUS THOSE SOULLESS BLACK CHITINOUS EYES ARE STARING DEEP INTO MY VERY SOUL ARGH ARGH ARGH.

Curtis, 4/25/08

I’d like to give a nod to faithful reader commodorejohn, who predicted this plot development a week and a half ago; watch him break down the signs with admirable precision. I’d also like to point out that young Randy Wagstaff from season four of The Wire was depicted with a similar in-school candy-selling operation; later, his story ended (SPOILERS!) with fire-bombing and group homes and brutalization, so this Curtis bit should be good.