Slylock Fox, 2/21/23
So I guess these nightmare-bugs are supposed to be … termites? Or some other horrible bug that feasts on wood, but I’m not going to bother researching what that might be because I’d probably end up seeing actual photographs of these nightmares, which is definitely not something I’m up for. My point, though, is that clearly whatever sinister process granted sapience to the animals of the Slylockverse did so to even the very tiny and very gross among them. The question that today’s strip raises is whether these bugs, as part of their transformation, achieved human-scale proportions in defiance of the square-cube law, or if they remained tiny but their chefs carve bits of wood into miniature replicas of full-sized logs, as part of a elaborate culinary culture that we’re just getting a glimpse of here.
Pluggers is, of course, a fundamentally sad text, a ongoing and often quite grim paean to a supposedly bygone set of mores. Today, however, may be the first panel I can remember in which the practice being held up as an object of nostalgic longing is just obviously, demonstrably worse than what we have now. “Oh, can you kids today block that creepy guy you work with on Instagram so he doesn’t post borderline sexual comments on every one of your selfies, and also complain to HR about him? In my day, if I didn’t want to know he was jerking off, I would have to just leave my phone off the hook so that he couldn’t call me and nobody could either, and also quit my job!”