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Mary Worth, 6/2/14

Haha, well, that Mary Worth storyline ended pretty abruptly, didn’t it? One minute Tommy’s finding love and good honest hard work, both of which will sustain him as he finally enters adulthood and maturity (assuming he doesn’t develop Meat Lung from breathing in those sandwich fumes all day); then, suddenly, it’s Pool Party time, with Wilbur and Iris being all lovey-dovey in the background. (Tommy is not in attendance, of course, because he’s busy trying to get mustard stains out of the upholstery in the VIP section. THEY NEVER COME OUT, TOMMY; THEY NEVER COME OUT.)

The main theme here is obviously that Mary Worth sees life as a never-ending series of passive-aggressive contests in which she must triumph in order to maintain her self-image; this isn’t news, exactly, but it’s interesting to see it made so explicit here. “My brownish chicken blobs were a big hit last month, but this month I plan to obliterate all these earth-toned food shapes! Only Mary’s delicious chicken things can be remembered! Nothing else!” Then she spots a little kid, and plays nice while trying to figure who she belongs to and what horrors that person will suffer for violating the condo rules that preclude any children from coming within 500 yards of, or looking directly at, the Charterstone compound.

Slylock Fox, 6/2/14

Wow, Slylock sure is smug about his plan to keep him and Max alive by building a rudimentary desalination plant! Yep, they’ll have fresh, potable water indefinitely, if by “indefinitely” you mean “a couple weeks, tops,” since the process involves boiling water and the only fuel available is a single smallish palm tree and a boat that Max has already begun to cannibalize. Sure, boiling that octopus alive, using a giant spoon to occasionally push its writhing tentacles back into the pot, seemed like a fun way to pass the time, back when Max thought they could just drink as much ocean water as they wanted. Hindsight is 20-20, you know?

Heathcliff, 6/2/14

Heathcliff’s vibe can best be described as “surreal whimsy”; the thing is, if you ratchet back how aggressive you are about it, that also describes the New Yorker cartoon sweet spot. This one hits pretty close to that mark, honestly.

Marvin, 6/2/14

You know, I spend a lot of time making fun of all the poop jokes in Marvin, but that’s not all the strip is about! For instance, there are also jokes about how Marvin doesn’t like his father very much.