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Family Circus, 7/5/09

Like all right-thinking Americans, I have often allowed myself to spend idle moments imagining the death of the Keane clan. However, I see now that most of the scenarios I’ve conjured up — terrorist attack, murder-suicide pact, what have you — have been sadly pedestrian. Never, for instance, have I visualized them being killed by giant mutant ants! If we use grinning, doomed Jeffy as a reference point, the monsters in the lowermost chambers have to be at least the size of a terrier. I’m sure all four of the children will make tasty treats for the Queen of this awful colony.

Judge Parker, 7/5/09

Dear creators of the syndicated comic strip Judge Parker:

If you were working on a sitcom, or other long-form narrative acted out by live performers, you might find yourself in a situation where you had written out storylines that your actors were physically unable to perform. For instance, you might have an episode in which your nerdy heroine wows her school with her heretofore unmentioned prowess at jumping, aerial spinning, and other talents necessary for successful cheerleading, only to discover that the young actress tasked with playing the role wasn’t up the challenges laid out in the script. In that case, it would be acceptable, though rather transparent, to have all the action take place off camera.

However, in the comic strip form, your characters have no such limitations, and thus your decision to not show us any of the triumphant cheerleading routine that this entire ludicrous storyline has been leading up to is deeply puzzling.

The Comics Curmudgeon

P.S. On the other hand, it is enjoyable to interpret the dialogue in the first throwaway panel — “I didn’t know Sophie could do those things!” “Yeah … the cheerleader moms know they’re finished!” — as meaning that Sophie neutralized the cheerleader moms’ dozens of henchmen with her superhuman martial arts skills, and is now preparing to eliminate her chief adversaries once and for all.