I am, genuinely, done making fun here. If Newspaper Spider-Man wants to spend its last few days in the media landscape engaged in utterly pointless bait-and-switches over readership expectations vis-à-vis whether or not Peter is or is not wearing his spider-costume under his shirt, then I say go for it. One of the very first sequences I went through that really taught me what this strip was all about came in 2005, in which Peter’s undergarments were or perhaps were not a problem, with the changes having nothing to do with Peter’s own on-panel efforts. My point is that this feature is going out very much on its own terms. We should all be so lucky.
Family Circus, 3/21/19
One of my least favorite Family Circus things — and lord knows there’s a list — is when some semi-universal cultural touchstone unfolds in real life, like the Olympics or the NCAA basketball tournament, and we’re expected to believe that the Keane kids can’t stop pulling catchphrases from it. It took me a second to notice that Dolly is rubbing her arm here, indicating (I assume) that Billy hit her with the ball, or maybe just punched her and then quickly grabbed a ball so that he could say “I didn’t punch her! Both my hands are clearly occupied in holding this ball!”; before I realized that, I thought maybe he had just farted.
Gil Thorp, 3/21/19
I’m not really a “sports guy” so I sometimes I find myself in the position of wondering what it is that’s confusing me about Gil Thorp: the sport content or the trademark choppy narrative. Like, today, I don’t get why the idea of a scrimmage seems so freighted, and I don’t understand half of what Gil is talking about in panel two. But I do sincerely hope that panel three takes place nine days later, that the scrimmage drama was resolved to everyone’s satisfaction, and that the phone call Mimi is wrapping up here is acknowledging that and we never hear anything else about it.
Dick Tracy, 3/21/19
“It’s your case too, Joe. Go ahead, rifle through the drawers and get your fingerprints all over everything. Take a dump in the middle of the floor! Nobody can stop you!”