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Crock, 10/17/11

It may demolish everything you hold dear to hear this, but, when I go on vacation, I often don’t catch up on many of the comics that otherwise make up my daily rotation. I mean, obviously I need to keep up to date on every bizarre moment in Gil Thorp (OMG THERE IS AN ASPERGER’S SYNDROME STORYLINE YOU GUYS FOOTBALL SEASON MAY GET GOOD/HORRIFYINGLY ILL-CONCEIVED YET), but, you know, I usually don’t feel like I really need to check in with all the Crocks I missed just for completeness’s sake. And yet today’s installment left me scrambling through the archives, desperate to figure out if, as the word “still” in the opening word balloon here implies, that there was some sort of ongoing plot involving the two hotbox prisoners finally going insane due to heat and isolation. But no, there’s no explanation, really, except maybe this, which only makes sense if the prisoners in the hotboxes are also vultures. Which seems insane, but, when you think about it, no more insane than the idea that one of the hotbox prisoners is having a psychotic break in which several cultural touchstones from the 1980s and 1990s merge together to form some kind of spectacularly unfunny punchline-like utterance. But focusing on the details here causes us to miss the important big picture, which is: don’t do drugs, kids, for serious.

Spider-Man, 10/17/11

I understand and respect those who simply cannot work up the energy to deal with newspaper Spider-Man on its incredibly inane terms, but really, panel two does remind me why I love it so. I’m trying to parse precisely what kind of dumb Spidey is supposed to be exhibiting here; my guess is that he truly believes that MJ has spontaneously acquired spider-sensing powers, which comes as an enormous shock to him because he knows better than anyone else that his supposed supposed spider-sense doesn’t actually exist.

Slylock Fox, 10/17/11

Fun fact for you: frogs and toads are no longer considered distinct groupings by biologists. The order Anura embraces all frogs and toads; any species of that order that lives most of its life on land is labelled a “toad,” but these species don’t have a single common ancestor distinct from the common ancestor of everything in Anura. I found this out while doing a bit of research to come up with a joke about this strip. Slylock Fox may call itself “Comics for Kids,” but I’m 37 years old and I still learned something from it! So I feel a little churlish pointing out that today’s puzzle’s solution hinges on something of a scientific inaccuracy, and furthermore that said solution focuses on the amphibian life cycle and yet the illustrative comic includes a frog with a belly button.