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Crankshaft and Curtis, 12/1/21

I’m genuinely of the opinion that “gaslighting,” as a word, at one point conveyed a useful concept but has had its impact significantly reduced by ever-broadening use. But still! These two strips use a structure common to mild domestic comedies, where a child or old person is unfamiliar with or confused by a concept intuitively understood by an adult of a normal age. But in this case, the concepts are, respectively, “There’s a thing called a ‘smart pad’ that everyone has, maybe everyone is required to have” and “ghost flush,” and gosh darn it if I don’t feel as if I’m Ingrid Bergman being manipulated by Angela Lansbury and Charles Boyer! Am I an old person, like Lillian, flummoxed by the “smart pad” revolution and unable to remember where I put mine and increasingly suspicious that I don’t even own one? Am I a child, like Curtis, who has never heard of a “ghost flush” and would immediately assume that it was about a ghost, flushing? Am I full-on in the Berenstein Bears universe now? WHAT IS HAPPENING

Dick Tracy, 12/1/21

Oh wow, it looks like Dick’s decision to dabble in hoodies was actually just a way to help him to transition to full on disguises, huh. You know, I never pegged Dick as a supergenius or anything, but I have to respect the fact that he saw the flaw in in this criminal gang’s “Let’s wear identity-obscuring gimp suits at all times, even when we’re just hanging out with each other at the office” shtick before they did.