Pajama Diaries, 1/4/20
Aw, man! Pajama Diaries, which became my go-to strip for vaguely enjoyable obsessive-neurotic stylings when Edge City went out of business, is also folding up shop. RIP Pajama Diaries, you were pretty good! If anyone else has a line on a strip featuring secular Jewish characters whose playful performance of anxiety masks some really profound terror about everyday life, please let me know, as I find that sort of thing intensely relatable.
Meanwhile, the insufferably smug gentiles of Dustin will just continue to move through their lives without spending a moment worrying about anything or examining their own terrible behavior and attitudes. These two feel justified getting in this little dig despite the fact that we’ve never seen them praying, going to church, or doing anything even vaguely religious in the strip. God is dead, which is just as well because now He doesn’t have to learn about Instagram, you know?
Dick Tracy, 1/4/20
Apparently someone has tasked the Dick Tracy creative team with adding more “psychological depth” to the strip’s villains so we can understand their “motivations” or whatever, so, here you go: Mr. Roboto robs banks not just because he loves the money, but because bank robberies provide a thrilling change of pace from his otherwise dull life. It’s not clear what he feels like dressing up as a Styx robot adds to the whole process, or why cyber-cosplay isn’t enough to alleviate the ennui and why he has to bring crimes into the mix, but I think we know enough for us to feel a twinge of empathy when Dick inevitably shoots him in the face.
The Lockhorns, 1/4/20
I find it particularly challenging sometimes to construct a narrative setup to make sense of the Lockhorns panels where non-Lockhorns characters interact (always silently) with Leroy and Loretta. Like, today: who is this lady? Why is she at the Lockhorns’ house at what I assume from context is no later than 10 am to watch Leroy day drink? Is this some poor unsuspecting acquaintance Loretta has dragged over on a flimsy pretext just so she could have a witness to her husband’s alcohol problems? Whatever the case, her fixed facial expression as she stares off into the middle distance indicates that this will be her last visit, and indeed her last interaction with either of these two of any kind.
Gil Thorp, 1/4/20
You know, we make fun of Gil a lot for not doing much by way of actual coaching in this strip, but honestly it turns out that watching someone coach in a comic is boring as shit, and maybe we shouldn’t complain so much.