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Gil Thorp, 7/30/08

I can’t hold back any longer! Summer, my friends, is the season when Gil Thorp is traditionally freed from the shackles of its need to focus on boring high school athletics and truly finds its completely deranged natural level. 2006 brought us vicious fights between little girls and Ben Franklin, time-traveling golf grifter; last summer, we saw one-legged boxing follies and the glory and majesty of Coach Kaz, PI to the rock and roll Carole King. Thus, I’ve been patiently awaiting the end of the very special “Elmer gets deported” storyline so we can move on to the summer madness.

But now, as we’re only a few weeks away from the start of football practice, it’s becoming clear that there is no joy in Milford. Elmer’s springtime woes have just dragged right on into July, as he’s been recalled from his two-week Mexile to take a spot on the independent minor league Kalamazoo Kings. So instead of boring high school sports action, we’re getting boring vaguely professional sports action, and it’s boring. The faint hopes that were raised by my first read of panel two’s narration box — “It’s the Kings vs. the Chillicothe Pants” — were dashed by a closer inspection of the text. Even the red-hot lower back action in panel three can’t save this from snoresville.

For Better Or For Worse, 7/30/08

After the trivet incident, I’m hesitant to admit when I have to look up a word in the dictionary, but: mucilage? Really? Maybe the reason Lynn Johnston is retiring is because there will soon literally be no words left in the English language to pun upon.

“An adhesive solution” is no doubt the meaning intended here, but the dictionary built in to my computer has as the word’s first definition “a viscous secretion or bodily fluid,” so this actually may not be a pun at all. “What you’re feeling? That’s mucilage! Please, change me! My own daughter refused and said I was ‘gross!'”

Beetle Bailey, 7/30/08

Like the fact that he could see right up your skirt in panel two, for instance.