Herb and Jamaal, 11/17/08
Far be it for me to tell hard-working cartoonists how to do their jobs … oh, wait, actually, it turns out that that’s exactly what my schtick is. Anyway, clearly ketchup is the wrong vaguely edible item to be used as the lynchpin of this joke. I think virtually all American bachelors have ketchup in their refrigerators. Quite a few probably have only ketchup in their refrigerators. Back when I was a bachelor, I had generally had in my refrigerator mayonnaise, milk, butter, barbecue sauce, leftover Chinese food, and a bottle of ketchup — even though I never really put ketchup on anything, I just sort of felt like it was something I had to have. It’s the Default American Condiment.
Anyway, this comic would have worked better if Herb had asked for, say, that mysterious gooey pink sauce you get in packets with Chinese take-out. I was going to try to figure out the name for that substance, but then I realized that “that mysterious gooey pink sauce you get in packets with Chinese take-out” also worked better in the Herb and Jamaal oeuvre. Of course, it would be kind of weird for Herb to want to put that stuff on his hamburger, but it’s also kind of weird that he’s eating a hamburger that’s roughly eighteen inches across, so who am I to say what’s normal in this scenario.
Mary Worth, 11/17/08
As a fan of laughably concretized metaphors, I’m glad to see that Lynn is shredding things, just like her father shreds her soul. I’ve had cats that dealt with life’s stresses in much the same way. Unfortunately, what with the strip’s typically inscrutable art, I can’t tell if she’s shredded the designer scarf daddy bought her for Christmas in July or just some random topo maps she keeps around for emo acting-out purposes. Anyway, I hope that she’s worked all this angst out of her system so that she can take off her casual purple lounging track suit and put on that kicky stripey blue t-shirt and face the world with a smile!
Gasoline Alley, 11/17/08
I can’t tell you why exactly, but after multiple Gasoline Alley storylines that I’ve more or less ignored completely, I’m suddenly riveted by the tale of Slim and Clovia’s financial woes. But Slim contemplating injuring himself terribly for money may have something to do with it.