Can’t stop staring at that blatantly traced grill
Blondie and Hi and Lois, 5/20/23
As a participant in the childfree lifestyle, I appreciate what representation I can find in the comics, even if it’s just Dagwood and Blondie’s
best only friends Herb and Tootsie, or Hi and Lois’s best friends Hi’s coworker Thirsty and his wife Irma, who they keep at arm’s length. Anyway, Thirsty has at least come round to his opinion on procreation based on hard experience over a too-short fence, whereas Herb seems to be guessing at “parenting” activities based on movies he saw 20 years ago.
Judge Parker, 5/20/23
Oh, right, remember Eric, the traumatized son of the murderous meth judge? Well, his dad went to jail and now he’s living with Abbey, or maybe with Abbey’s horses. Abbey has been “feeling lost” ever since her dumb business venture, her political career, and her marriage all failed, but she has an idea, if Sophie is willing the help! (The idea is using Eric and Sophie to breed a new “master race” of weird sad foundling kids who ended up on Abbey’s ranch for whatever reason.)
Beetle Bailey, 5/20/23
OK, so the bad news is that we’re fighting another war, but the good news is that after like 70-plus years, the military has determined that Beetle is finally adequately trained to fight in it.
148 replies to “Can’t stop staring at that blatantly traced grill”
MW: Meanwhile, the World is saying; Shut up, already!
JP: City kid Eric feels slighted when Buttercup refuses a handful of mothballs.
Blondie / Hi and Lois: What a different set of families! Alexander seems to be perfectly happy to be twinning with his Dad, despite a shared appearance that seems to be getting more bug-like with every passing day. But Hi’s kids seem miserable, because they know they’ll probably inherit his weirdly enlarged lower face. (Yet they’re too dumb to realize that they already have it.) Meanwhile, both families have relatively normal-looking neighbors who are sick of watching them, but don’t seem to have anything else to do with their miserable, boring lives.
Judge Parker: So, judging from that kid’s hair color, his parents are Abbey and the horse? That wouldn’t be the weirdest story this strip has ever done.
Beetle Bailey: “Remember when they used to sing ‘Give Peace a Chance,’ a song that was written 30 years before we were born?” “No.” “Well, it never had a chance, did it?” “What are you complaining about? It’s a beautiful day, and we’re outside playing war games in South Carolina.”
“Gee, Mary, you have so much wisdom, and I have none.”
“Yes. Yes, that’s true. See that? You’ve just become wiser.”
BB. “Give Peace a Chance” came out in 1969. The US is fighting an advanced foe who apparently is in the ballpark of being an equal power. Beetle and Plato are dressed like WW2 GIs while entrenched like they are about to start digging a trench formation like WW1. We’re either in some odd dimension where history has gone off the rails–like maybe Newton Baker beat FDR for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1932–or General Halftrack finally decided to kill a certain underperforming private. I suspect the latter, especially since Lt. Fuzz will be set up to take the fall.
Call me a sceptic, but I doubt any army, no matter how desperate, would send into combat a man with no eyes.
Beetle Bailey : this strip would be better if it had a missile headed straight for Beetle and Plato, who instead says : “WE never had a chance, did we?”
Family Circus : I hope those aren’t real guns… I mean, would YOU trust the melonheads with loaded firearms!?
Judge Parker : I thought Judge Meth had died, unceremoniously shot by criminals off-panel in an abrupt “Storyline Over. Spring comes to Cavelton” moment. Did I remember wrong (from not actually following this dumb strip that closely?)
Rhymes with Orange : “Fun” “Fact” : this is actually the reason Snake precedes Horse in the chinese zodiac.
H&L: If I lived next door to kids that never grew up, I’d drink, too.
MW: “And furthermore…Why aren’t you writing this down, Jeff? This is gold, here!”
RMMD: “C’mon, let’s go find some other performers that won’t meet our lofty expectations!”
And if they vrush after that, they might even be in time for the towel folding exhibition!
By the moustache of Aldo Kelrast, would you two just stuff food in your mouths and shut up?!?
CS: Sure, why not, Batty? Why don’t you have them pick up garbage while they’re at it?
GT: Gil immediately books flights to Japan AND Taiwan. “Two can play this game, Martinez-Hernandez!”
MW: At an adjacent table, another couple overhears Mary and Jeff and are appalled by the non-stop drivel. “Jeez, these two don’t give each other a minute’s peace.”
RMMD: And so the saga of Fergus Lemuel Mud Mountain Murphy ends with not a bang, but a whimper. Which pretty much also describes Hank and Yvonne’s honeymoon so far.
BB – This is an amazing finale to a long running strip, a commentary on war and the low-level grunts who never had a say in any of it.
This is the final strip, right? Please?
I like how Inner Beauty’s dress neckline suddenly grew and then shrank between panels. It was probably desperate to cover her up and then relented when the attention shifted to the other imbecile.
Blondie: I bonded with my children by playing D&D with them. My son got a bulette companion (of sorts) named Bulbasaur. I know little to nothing about cars.
H&L: Thirsty, perhaps understandably, doesn’t want to admit to the shameful fact that his alcoholism contributed to his disastrously low sperm count. It really isn’t something one discusses with acquaintances.
BB: They are going to provide no assistance to Ukraine.
Beetle – “Oh, I wouldn’t say that. It only made it to 14 in the US, but it hit #2 on the British singles chart.”
Beetle Bailey: With all the US’s military budget being diverted to the CIA-backed Ukrainian Neo-Nazi battalions, Beetle is finally forced to fight the war he (quite literally) never saw coming.
Though the US Military is depleted and they’re fighting modern warfare in 1950s style helmets, ironically this gives Beetle and co. the best chance of survival. He’s been wearing that helmet for so long it’s permanently fused to his skull and turned him into some kind of immortal metal super-soldier.
In the future, much like our humble cockroach, legends will be told about “the beetle who survived a nuclear blast”.
JP – “Mom, we’ve been over this before. There’s no need for all this backwoods orienteering stuff. If you’re feeling lost, just use your GPS.”
Don Abundio, translated:
“Don Abundio sucks at golf. Why does he play?”
“Beats me. But we’re converting this course back to farmland”
“At least he’s plowing it up for us”
Frazz: I hope she’s not standing in a pile of whatever Frazz is sweeping up.
Luann: I hate to say it, but I agree with Bernice. At any rate, maybe the Evanses don’t want to call attention to the fact that their strips are joke-free.
CS: Is Batiuk OK? I’m worried that the “absurdity” in this strip is driven by dementia.
9CL: I’m going to assume this is some kind of double entendre joke, where Chedda is going to give Hugh applause for maintaining an erection for longer than four seconds.
MW: “Sometimes love is helping each other enjoy the CALM.” All the patrons in the Bum Boat respond in unison, “Sometimes love is helping each other enjoy the CLAM. So, for the love of Pete, SHUT THE FUCK UP and let us enjoy our CHOWDER!!”
Dustin: Oh, hey, it’s the one remotely likeable character in this strip! Bonus, the joke is serviceable, if a bit worn.
FC: “The Grudge ghost won’t be able to get by us!”
MW: “Now pay attention to me, you voyeuristic freak!”
FC-Sam’s just rolling his eyes at the idiocy of these four.
RMMD-You can catch the end of the fight where Dave smashes his guitar over Deke’s head and storms off.
MW-“Waiter, check please and put it on THAT couples bill,” the people at the other table say pointing towards Mary and Jeff.
JP-A pony show?
JP: “And, or course, by ‘helping out with the horses,’ I mean ‘Very slowly feeding them.'”
H&L: Wait, did Thirsty and Irma have children that tragically died? Is this deep Hi & Lois lore coming out? This would go a long (and not very humorous) way in explaining why Thirsty is such an apathetic drunk who neglects his wife and home. Otherwise, what the hell is Hi talking about by asking if they “miss having kids?”
BB: Presumably today’s strip is the result of the past two days of unchecked Sgt. Snorkel gluttony, which has since spiraled to imperil the resources of the planet, and the rest of the world has now declared war on the United States to stop Sarge before it’s too late. Not sure what else to say about this strip, which is uncharacteristically grim and as unfunny as its aforementioned literal sister strip.
JP meta: Once again, I don’t know whether to fault Josh for completely losing the plot or blame Marciuliano and Manley for making every action of consequence in their story happen off-page. (NB: Unless M&M have him pull a Palpatine in the future, Judge Duncan is very, very dead, not in jail.)
Dustin: Which raises the question, Why on earth would anyone ever make such a list?
GT: Since Pedro is an item with Gil’s daughter, maybe he can transfer to Milford, since clearly there are no rules in place at all.
Apparently someone at the Seattle Times actually uses the paper’s website, because it appears that they have gotten rid of that incredibly annoying fade-in in-house ad that slowly obstructed readers from viewing any page.
I would almost swear I have seen old Hi and Lois strips where Thirsty and Irma have children (and where she’s not named Irma). I am guessing that even in the Eisenhower era, a degenerate alcoholic ignoring his kids didn’t seem funny. (Of course, a degenerate alcoholic ignoring his wife is always hilarious.)
@Tom T.: You mean I can go back to using the ST website without going into Incognito mode? That’s good news indeed.
JP: “I am going to carry out a Babalon Working, in order to produce the Moonchild, who will be the next stage in human evolution and the savior of our race. We just need to get Eric to impregnate you, somehow.”
(I am irritated to see Josh sniffing up a similar spoor, but I already worked this out in my head before I saw what he wrote, and damned if I’m not using it. Besides, the Crowley nerds will enjoy my specifics)
H&L: Awkward locution aside, this is such an absurdly intimate question. I’d be uncomfortable asking this of my best friend, let alone one of my neighbors. Particularly given that when this strip started, fertility treatment was minimal. Thirsty and Irma might have wanted children very much, but we’re denied simply by fate.
Phantom: They’ve apparently killed a man who was locked behind bars at the time, all because Kit stopped to taunt him and then couldn’t manage the situation.
Beetle Bailey – I did not expect a goofy legacy comic strip to make a poignant observation about the perpetual war machine enabled by the military-industrial complex, which eventually broke the Baby Boomers’ pacifist spirit and turned them all into cocaine-snorting capitalists.
MW: I imagine I’m the only one who wants to tell Mary to fuck off already. I denounce myself for that.
Blondie: Herb tries desperately to convince himself that his ideas of masculinity and father-son bonding are superior to Dagwood’s, because if Dagwood is superior to you in any respect at all, well, you may as well give up.
Hi And Lois: Me and my wife are firmly child-free, but my wife is also cursed to be the “cool aunt” of her family that all the kids love, resulting her sometimes getting roped into babysitting for her various family members. Her experiences babysitting have just confirmed to her even more that she never wants to have kids. What I’m saying here is, I just showed my wife this strip and said “this you” and got a pillow thrown at my head.
Judge Parker: I’m guessing Abbey’s new modus operandi is taking in any orphaned teenager she can get ahold of in order to build a militia/gang that will allow her to fill the void left behind by the defeat of the town’s many meth gangs.
Beetle Bailey: Oh boy, I can’t wait to see what war crimes Beetle witnesses, suffers, or commits!
Beetle Bailey-The General has sent his mercenary army off to Ukraine to fight the Russians. “Men, we have spent the past seventy years training to fight the Russians and now our time has come to put that training to use.”
Curtis: With a tongue like that, Curtis is gonna make some woman very happy.
Sally Forth: I laughed the laugh of the unironic.
Dustin: A three-panel Pluggers. An improvement over the typical Dustin strip.
As payment, Abbey lets them motorboat her.
Also, ditto on the childfree sentiments.
JP-I’m just wondering which one of them is going to wear the harness and be ridden hard Abbey or Eric.
H&L: Teenagers today with their comically oversized boom-boxes, amirite? Bet he’s cranking up the Twisted Sister on that!
Phantom: Can’t resist taunting the guy after he’s already been murdered, huh? Our hero, folks!
G. *(&$@! Thorp: Does Gil think blindness is contagious and that Ggreg Hammm can pass on his lack of vision to the Korean Nightmare?
Luann: As bad as other comics (particularly Funkyshaft) are with wordplay, this one might low-key be the worst. Luann has it all: massive reaching, inappropriate and forced delivery or sources, tonal whiplash, running the joke into the ground, self congratulation and pre-emptive disowning, and just being overall weak. On its face, Piro’s quip today may not seem as bad as the several weeks of “[adjective]-tea” puns, but considering he’s supposedly meeting the girl of his dreams right after vulnerably pouring his heart out in front of a crowd of people, this is especially atrocious. What a stupid thing to have this character say in this moment. It’s like if Old Yeller ended with Travis shooting his beloved pet and then saying, “Well, doggone!” while grinning and winking at the camera.
Blondie-“Let’s shut the blinds before they get a taste for meat and notice us.”
Luann-“There was a joke?” A question the readers have long been asking.
“Sophie, would you mind trying on this horse costume?”
MW – Meanwhile, the woman at the other table is texting her husband, “See that couple at the other table? Talking with their mouths full?”
MW: (pssst, they can *hear* you!)
DT: Stanton and Curtis seem to be having a bit of trouble with Evil-Eye Fleagle’s Brooklyn accent. Today he speaks a dialect including samples of Chicago, Appalachia, and Papuan New Guinea.
(Quick internet investigation reveals that Capp himself couldn’t decide whether the spelling is “Fleagle” or “Fleegle,” and switched back and forth over the years)
In Security: Today, a reprint of one of my favorite strips in this decidedly up-and-down comic.
Did Comics Kingdom remove the comments section entirely, or is the site just glitching up?
9CL – So, apparently “learning how to receive applause” is boinking. When Xiulan says “receive applause”, she’s talking about the boinking. Those hand gestures she makes – they refer to the boinking.
Also, Hugh wants to teach his (?) newborn son how to receive applause.
JP – I don’t think Abbey would do something so vulgar and passe as trying to mate Eric and Sophie. No, I think she wants Sophie’s help in cutting him off at the waist and stitching him onto one of the horses to create a centaur. So she can fuck it.
mary worth – why is june trying to make dr jeff look like zac? i guess strip steak and clam chowder makes you look twenty years younger . Jeff tells mary no dessert today they just might have time to see the dave and deke combo.
@Liam:Hear me out: send Beetle Bailey and the Camp Swampy crew to fight in Ukraine, but on the side of the Russians. Putin will be defeated within the week.
DT – If Stanton and Pleger want to do L’il Abner, they should just do L’il Abner. It was a much more entertaining strip than Dick Tracy ever was, with even better violence, and Rose the redheaded criminal gal from a while back shows Pleger’s definitely up to Daisy Mae and Moonbeam McSwine. Go for it!
Seriously, I’m a Phantom fan and have a whole bunch of comics. This is so horribly out of character for The Phantom, and it just seems like Tony DePaul completely failing to understand the title character. It makes me sad, because this is supposed to be “The end of The Phantom”, the tale that canonically shows his death.
So in a story where we’re meant to see him go out as a hero regardless of which path leads him to death, it just ends with everybody just wishing he would die.
The old timers at Chronicle Chamber will be pissed.
Ah well, here’s a snarky comment to lighten the mood anyway.
The Phantom: Never fear, stereotypically unquestionably evil white man in a prison full of stereotypically unquestionably noble black people. With any luck, Babudan’s wrist slashing arrows are as useless as Guran’s Amnesia Powder.
…So, how about those Dodgers?”
@Scratchy Scrotum LXIX: Also, ditto on the childfree sentiments.
You don’t know what you’re missing.
Now you say: thank goodness.
Pluggers: Pluggers have bushy eyebrows. Also, Pluggers are deaf.
Blondie: It’s always fun to check under the clit hood.
@Maude R. Fawker: Thank goodness.
@Hugh G. Rection:
And it doesn’t require that the Bumstead boys give up their love of eating!
Beetle Bailey: “They’ve got Patriot missiles. Quick, boys, dig holes! Did you bring your sandbags? “
H&L: Hi’s question–“Do you and Irma miss having kids?”–is worded in a way to suggest Thirsty is not childfree but an empty nester, with adult children grown and moved away from the house. (Or perhaps any children they had at one point were lost down the memory hole at Walker-Browne LLC.) I think Hi is gently trying to approach the topic of just how to get his own kids out of their eternal stasis.
JP: “I’ve failed at absolutely everything else I’ve attempted, but I’ve got a good feeling about THIS one!”
“The Bumsteads aren’t most people. I mean, there are only four of them, and seven billion people, so the Bumsteads are . . . just a second, let me pull up my calculator, Bumsteads are only 0.000000057143 percent of people. Or 0.000000028571 percent of people if we’re just talking about Alex and Dagwood. Definitely not most people.”
Blondie: It’s unusual to see the Photoshop layers so cleanly divided in a daily strip—usually they do a better job of combining things so it looks almost like a single, hand-made drawing. Anyway, now accepting bets on what the grill layer was when they first came up with this joke. Personally, I’m going with a Martin Marietta SM-68A/HGM-25A Titan I intercontinental ballistic missile, and Herb was a Soviet spy.
H&L: It was pretty bold of Thirsty to say “Nah, your kids are enough” right to Hi’s face. But I guess if Hi still hasn’t wondered why his kids all look like Thirsty, there probably wasn’t much danger.
@cheech wizard: You win!
If you’ve ever wondered where Beetle Bailey stands on the cultural reference scale, well: hip enough to know John Lennon’s “Give Peace a Chance,” several leagues shy of being hip enough to know Bob Marley and the Wailers’ “War.” (Words by Haile Selassie. No, really.)
9CL: Brooke has a very unrealistic view of the amount of sex the parents of newborns (especially the mother) are up for.
Dustin: Good to know Dustin and Dustdad will only get MORE awful and hateful as they age.
MW: They’re not calm, they’re quietly repressing the urge to slap you for loudly speculating about their personal life in front of them.
@Ukulele Ike: @cheech wizard: Well, that’s enough internet for today. Got some sins to go repent of!
@Ukranazi Stepan: And if they vrush after that, they might even be in time for the towel folding exhibition!
Don’t forget the men’s hairy leg and belly flop competitions.
“Sophie, I fucked up my life, and now I feel lost. I blame Life!”
The thing about those foxholes in *checks calendar* 2023 is that the sandbags cost $80,000 each and that was during Raytheon’s Presidents Day sale. At least Plato is aware that they’re just there to feed the military industrial complex.
After the last week of Mary Worth, I surmise that meddling is contagious. It has jumped to Jeff. As other astute Mudges (and what other kind of Mudges are there?) have pointed out, Mary has gone into contrary mode, disagreeing with Jeff on everything. But one wonders if she is outraged at his invasion of her turf. Could we see an explosion on that “Substitute for Viagra” yacht of Jeff’s? (And “Substitute for Viagra” yacht is a term coined by another Mudge, whom I can’t remember; it is not a product of my own creativity.)
It’s been some time since Beetle Bailey introduced a new character. This is now it happens: first a non-speaking role, then hanging around, and next thing you know it’s like they’ve been there all along. So I have great hopes for PFC Bang there, the military man with a rifle and rage issues. Here comes hilarity!
H&L: “Do you and Irma miss having kids…since Child Protective Service took your twins and placed them with us?”
BB – “Yeah, I remember that song. So why are we still in these foxholes? I thought it was only the Russians who are sending old men into battle. Wait… what is this bottle of vodka doing here?”
@TheDiva: “ 9CL: Brooke has a very unrealistic view of the amount of sex the parents of newborns (especially the mother) are up for.”
One of my “favorite” 9CL sequences was the one where Edda visits each of the identical couples one by one and asks them the same question – “how do you manage disagreements in your relationship?”. Of course, each couple in turn insisted that they do it by boinking, of course, which instantly makes the problem go away forever.
But, if you just had a baby and aren’t ready to boink again, then what? Do all the years of unresolved resentment and disappointment come boiling to the surface?
Maybe that’s why the chickweed chicks always marry these premature wilting flowers – if the whole thing lasts for less then half a minute and there is no time to even disrobe before it is over, then you can boink away the pain of the relationship without ever needing to bring the vagina into it, or vice-versa.
Hagar the Horrible-“What about those Frenchmen I brought home last month? Make one of them fix the roof.”
Blondie – You can only distinguish Dag from baby dumpling by considering the likelihood of Dag putting his nose to the grindstone….
H&L – Thursty has a point – that constant annoying diaper stink…oh wait…that’s Thursty’s Depends(TM)….
JP – Even the horse ain’t buying’ this shit….
BB – Only the dead have seen the end of war.
Adios Amigos, DJ,
“Miss having kids” implies that … Thirsty’s kids are dead? Suddenly his alcoholism takes on a whole new meaning.
Abbey’s decided her next scheme will be the first porno studio where all the performers are orphans
@KMD: My theory is that the dinosaur hunter stepped on a butterfly again.
@Rube: I was happy to see that, too. That popup was extremely annoying.
Lest we forget Thirsty and “Carrie” did have a baby…
@I speak Jive: Was that a Bradbury? I remember reading that story eons ago, but can’t remember what collection is was from.
Wouldn’t it have been funnier to see Darryl asking one of the kids about Amazon overnight delivery charges, rather than just sitting there and idiotically admitting to his wife he (such a tired trope) forgot their anniversary?
Just a thought.
MW – Our own thing is making cutting remarks about people behind their backs. Hmm – that reminds me – I wonder if “Frazz” would consider a crossover. I’d like to talk to that skinny young teacher. She’s going to ruin her knees with all that running. Plus that boyfriend’s quirks aren’t endearing.
FC – Wow. It would have taken a fraction of a second to put a small orange blot at the end of the barrels of those toy guns, like toy weapons have now. He must have figured that there was no console TV or dial telephone, so it could just run as is.
Jef Keane needs to take a good look at these old strips and actually think about them and how things have changed in the forty years since they originally ran. I hope the melonheads don’t take those toys to school.
Rex Morgan – I love how the clothing is barely sketched. I’d really like to see what Yvonne wears to the dining room on formal night.
@Liam: Fifty million Frenchmen can’t be wrong.
@cheech wizard: “A Sound of Thunder,” from The Golden Apples of the Sun, 1964.
@cheech wizard: Yes. A Sound of Thunder.
I’m not a fan of short stories, but I really like that one.
I think if I saw my grandfather OBVIOUSLY looking for something, I’d ask, “What are you looking for?” instead of “What are you doing?”
@I speak Jive: Short stories were Ray’s strong suit. His best novels (IMO) The Martian Chronicles and Dandelion Wine, were just a bunch of short stories strung together.
The serial murderer chapter from DW was included in an Alfred Hitchcock suspense anthology and it stood just fine on its own. The tennis shoe chapter from the same novel was included in a high school English textbook, ditto.
Dennis the Menace-Do they do yoga together?
Blondie – The thing with the 1950s suburbia setting that so many long-running comics use is that it is meant to be neutral, but is very much not neutral. Huge swaths of the South and Midwest would make grilling, and having the most advance grill available, a regular part of their summer culture, especially among father and son. Wait until Dagwood goes from merely being a fan of old westerns to a midlife crisis where he decides he’s a cowboy, and shows up to car pool in his enormous pickup truck.
Hi and Lois – Thirsty should count himself lucky that he doesn’t live in Dennis and Mr. Wilson’s neighborhood.
Judge Parker – I’m not much of a Judge Parker reader, or a true crime fan, but I will embrace it if this becomes the story about how Abbey starts a horse-therapy center for troubled teens that will turn into a cult.
Beetle Bailey – The military is currently facing a huge shortfall in recruiting as Gen Z, fully aware of *waves hands at political and world situation*, is unwilling to risk their lives and bodies. During the post-COVID phase when cheap employers whined that “no one wants to work”, the Starbucks employees unionized to press demands. Could Plato become the next Andy Stapp, who tried to unionize the military during the Vietnam War to push for peace? Maybe! It is certainly something that could make this old strip more relevant to the youth of today.
Beetle Bailey takes a hard pivot into the world of hard hitting political commentary as the troops join the war in the Ukraine. Look for the strip next week in the Opinion section between the political cartoons and Doonesbury.
Hi & Lois takes a hard pivot into the world of mental health, as they finally start addressing why Thirsty became an alcoholic: the tragic death of his children.
Blondie takes a hard pivot into the world of corporate sponsorship, as each comic will now feature Dagwood raving about some product. Contact King Features to have your product featured!
Judge Parker takes a hard pivot into the world of theater, as they decide to put on a production of the play “Equus”. The only question is how far they get before the newspapers revolt.
@I speak Jive: Ah, thanks. I read a bunch of Bradbury and other sci fi as an adolescent, but couldn’t remember if that was one of his.
U. Ike – yes, short stories were what he did best. I started to read Fahrenheit 451 but just couldn’t get into it.
H&L: Thirsty and Irma are not the parents of Chip’s oafish buddy (who often wears a sailor cap)? My assumptions of the structure of the Walker-Browneverse have been shattered. The cumulative 20 seconds of my life that I have spent in contemplating Hi and Lois has apparently been a total waste.
Blondie: there are some strange hairstyles Dagwood and Alexander have–centre parts, that weird cowlick and it looks like mutton chop sideburns. What do you supposed that’s called?
BB: Because only their heads and shoulders are exposed, Beetle and Plato are safe from the machine gun fire and artillery rounds, and can comfortably carry on a conversation about songs they like.
@Liam: Dogs and cats doing yoga together! Mass hysteria!
@seismic-2: He’s never been shown hanging out at their house, but on the other hand, that’s just the kind of parents we’d expect Thirsty and Irma to be.
BB: Since both sides in the Ukraine War are actually putting vintage weapons back into service I guess Beetle and his buddies aren’t at that much of a disadvantage with their M-1 rifles and Korean War era tanks. The M-1 Garand will definitely give them the edge over a bolt action Mosin-Nagant rifle.
BTW: Sticking your head and shoulders in plain view like that would guarantee Beetle and Plato getting their heads blown off in a matter of seconds.
BB: Fact 1: Beetle and Ovid personally remember a protest song released in 1969. Fact 2: They’ve never been shown shipping out of Camp Swampy. Conclusion: Beetle Bailey takes place in an alternate timeline where the US descended into another Civil War sometime in the 1970s.
H&L: “See, if only you and Lois found each other as sexually repulsive as Irma and I do…Ah well, too late now.”
JP: You just know that Abbey telling Sophie, “I have an idea…if you’re willing to help” will eventually lead to the Spencer-Drivers motoring away from Cavelton as it’s enveloped by a mushroom cloud. Perhaps the tragic and pretty stable boy can go with them if he proves himself sufficiently amusing.
@Professor Well Actually: I think, after all these years, they probably call the style the “Dagwood.” It is pretty specific to this comic. And what teenage boy copies his dad’s hairstyle? I don’t think their styling is a matter of choice. I believe it’s a genetic anomaly.
@cheech wizard: #50:
“to create a centaur”
Knowing what fuck-ups Abbey and Sophie are they’ll probably try to graft Little Dunk’s bottom half onto a horses top half.
9CL: I dunno, maybe Hugh should learn to talk naturally to baby #1 before they start trying to make #2. (Yes, I said “make #2.” But this isn’t Marvin, beefwits.)
C-Shaft: For anyone with a microscopic amount of imagination the third panel is unnecessary. You know, like the two that preceded it, but more so.
DT: Evil-Eye Fleegle’s dialect speech—corresponding to no dialect I’m aware of—is so grating that I’m amazed Fearless Fosdick has kept his finger from squeezing the trigger this long.
Dustin: Oh, just complain freestyle. If you’re a member of this family you must have some gift for it.
Luann: No. No there was not.
Phantom: Unlike with James Bond, here the jobs of killing and coming up with a quip afterwards are split between two specialists.
RMMD: The Dave & Deke Combo (a real band, BTW) might get to make a brief cameo before the strip returns to matters of medicine or, failing that, Rex.
Shoe: Fair enough. Lots of birds eat bugs.
@Guillermo el chiclero: Why not do both?
JP – “I have an idea – if you’re willing to help.”
“Let’s stick a bit in his mouth, saddle up and put the spurs to him.”
“Cool – let me get my riding crop. We’ll put ‘im up wet!”
Did …did Hi help Thursty kill Irma? “Don’t you miss Irma and having kids” seems kind of strong to say for a non permanent situation like she’s away for the weekend. Have we stumbled into David Lynch’s “Hi & Lois” reboot?
(Quick internet investigation reveals that Capp himself couldn’t decide whether the spelling is “Fleagle” or “Fleegle,” and switched back and forth over the years)
Wasn’t he one of the Banana Splits? (Apologies for the earworm I just gave everyone.)
@Guillermo el chiclero: As a sharpshooter once showed, all you really need is a Carcano and the right place to stand.
Low and Hi-less: It’s like the intro to “The Prisioner” …”Who is #1?” “You are, #6” —-“Don’t you miss having kids?” “No, (having) yours was enough.”
Dick Twacy Hollistic Defective: Fosdick whispers “We got this, Tracy…just chant “Big bucks, big bucks no Whammies, no Whammies! STOP!”
Hi and Lois-“As long as our kids don’t move back in I’m happy.”
@Guillermo el chiclero:
@cheech wizard: #50:
“to create a centaur”
Knowing what fuck-ups Abbey and Sophie are they’ll probably try to graft Little Dunk’s bottom half onto a horses top half.
Won’t work, both Abbey and Sophie want to be the centaur of attention themselves.
Crank: Sorry, Batty, but while that’s a fine response to “Surely it can’t get any stupider”, the current king of proving that line wrong remains Ces, who managed to keep doing so for months.
HtH: The goblet confirms that “I have a very poor memory” means “I am very, very drunk”.
MT: Today’s nature lesson is don’t try to make friends with bears (we apologise for a previous nature lesson that was in error on this subject), but do send your dog in to scare them off.
MW: “Maybe couples that are really in tune with each other don’t need to spend all their time yammering about marriage, or how one of them left a supposedly fulfilling career in Vietnam on the other’s insistance and still regrets it sometimes, or what the people at the next table are doing. Just a thought, Jeff.”
Six Chex and a Cat Named Mrs Olsen: 6C invents the Participation Coffee.
Hi and Lois-A tear then runs down Thirsty’s cheek. His mind returns to that pool and the unlocked gate. His back was only turned for a minute but that’s how long they say it can take. He drinks to forget the memory of that empty crib.
Crankshaft-“Alright,” Cranky says excitedly, “Bigger game for me to run down.”
@Liam: Lou Costello reference?
@Artist formerly known as Ben: Re: RMMD: Really, Dave and Deke are a real band? I was thinking it was a nod to Jack and Jorma, making my Hot Tuna cite a real thing.
I don’t know.
(Click that, babies….it’s a hot “I Know You Rider,” one of the great Frisco psychedelic band covers)
@Liam: Lou Costello, Jr., drowned in his dad’s swimming pool at the age of….two? Lou Sr. went, in to do his radio show with Abbott on the same day. Jesus.
It was the subject of one of the Friedman Brothers’ great one-page comics.
@Voshkod: #109: The Italian Carcano rifle got an reputation for inaccuracy, though a lot of Austrio-Hungarian soldiers would beg to disagree. The problem was the US standard amongst ammo makers is .264 inch diameter for a 6.5 millimeter bullet. The Italian military loads used a .267-.268 inch diameter bullet. When reloaders used American bullets it resulted in a loose fit going down the barrel. With the proper diameter bullet (Oswald was shooting Italian military surplus ammo) they’re quite accurate.
H&L: Like Josh, I am a participant in the childfree lifestyle, and as a senior participant, I fortunately don’t get asked weird questions about my reproductive choices anymore. Hi’s question is a reminder of former times, however. Ugh.
JP: Melody Mare, if you have any insights on what’s going on in JP, your scoop would be much appreciated.
MT: Was Andy left in a closed but unlocked station wagon so he could somehow open the door on his own and get out when he was ready? Was the station wagon left open so Andy could get out easily, thereby leaving the station wagon open and unguarded? I can’t think of any alternative that doesn’t make Mark look kinda like an idiot, so it all works for me.
Zits from Spanish to English.
@Ukulele Ike: Omigawd.
That’s a true story. I remember reading about it several years ago.
@Garrison Skunk: “Not so fast, Whammy Man.” “Gasp! Michael Larson? Nooooo!!!”
Sorry to be a downer. Am I a baaaaaaaaaad boy?
(too soon? It WAS 1943) (click the Hot Tuna music link at #118. It will cheer you back up)
@cheech wizard: #94: One of my favorite stories about Bradbury was when he adapted the novel Moby Dick for the 1956 movie starring Gregory Peck and Richard Basehart. The director, John Huston, alcoholic bully that he was, took a particular dislike to Bradbury had gave him a hard time throughout the entire production, trying his best to humiliate him. One day Bradbury had enough of Huston’s shit and reached into the limo Huston was riding in, grabbed him by the lapels and pulled him halfway out the window. After telling Huston in no polite words what he’d do to if he didn’t lay off, he then forcibly shoved him back into the limo. He didn’t get anymore grief from Huston after that.
You know what’s NEARLY as depressing? Friedman’s comic “Old Bud Abbott.”
Abbott died of cancer in 1974, 15 years after Lou Costello passed away from a heart attack.
Sunday’s Mary Worth dubious quote: “Well, I love my cigar, but I take it out of my mouth every now and then”,Groucho Marx.
@Guillermo el chiclero: Holy shit! I love that film and have seen it a dozen times, and I never realized that Admiral Nelson of the Seaview (and the heartthrob of MST3K’s Gypsy) played Ishmael!
Also I love John Huston, alcoholic bully or no, and was extremely disappointed to meet Ray Bradbury in the early ‘80s and see that he had become a Reaganite right-wing nut job. I asked him how he could correlate his early work’s support of free speech and expression and imagination with the likes of Ed Meese (still alive, like Kissinger), and he told me “I was a young man and I would learn better when I got older.” No, thank goddess.
* John Huston
Come on, he gave all those pesos to Humphrey Bogart in the early scenes of Treasure of the Sierra Madre.
@Guillermo el chiclero: Wow, I never knew he did that screenplay. I saw it when they screened it for us at a high school assembly, I was never sure why. They’d show us highbrow movies once or twice a year, I guess they figured that was easier than teaching some of those kids to read. But good for him.
@Ukulele Ike: Sure, but so did Bugs Bunny.
@Peanut Gallery: Wow. Never seen that. Thank you.
@Tabby Lavalamp: I lost it at “Raytheon’s Presidents Day sale.” Brilliance.
@Ukulele Ike: Nice of Hanna-Barberra to give him an income stream voicing himself in their A&C cartoons.
@138 Ukulele Ike:
And the voice of Humphrey Bogart was provided by voice-over artist Dave Barry (not the columnist).
@118 Ukulele Ike: That’s a really nice Hot Tuna clip, but I still think “I Know You Rider” was always done best by The Seldom Scene.
@Ukulele Ike: #134: If you want to see Basehart in another good role check out The Black Book, a political thriller setting during the French Reign of Terror. Basehart played Robespierre. It also starred Bob “Love That Bob!” Cummings in a rare dramatic role.
The Black Book may be listed under its alternate title The Reign of Terror, probably to avoid confusion with a 2006 film of the same name.
“OK, so the bad news is that we’re fighting another war, but the good news is that after like 70-plus years, the military has determined that Beetle is finally adequately trained to fight in it.”
I mean, they’re obviously wrong–he is totally standing up, as is Plato(? I don’t know all their names) with no cover, nor even concealment, and neither of them is firing their weapons, despite what appears to be a raging battle going on in their immediate vicinity.
But that is also in line with the modern US Army, so…that fits.
War would be a lot more fun if weapons actually went “ka-pow” and “rat-a-tat-a-tat.” I draw the line at “whoosh” though.
@KMD: (BB) no, it’s all clear now. They all died in the Korean War, and this is Valhalla, the Viking heaven of eternal combat. Well, Valhalla’s cut-price neighbour: you still fight all day, but instead of feasting all night, you get to clean up the barracks. Ho-yo-to-ho, Miss Buxley, ho-yo-to-ho.
When I read strips like Blondie and Hi and Lois, I really understand the term Zombie franchise.
You quibble over whether Herb and Tootsie are the Bumsteads’ only friends, but I wouldn’t even go that far. When is the last time they did anything friend-like? Same with Hi and Thirsty. Positioned together as a ‘joke’ is delivered does not count.