The Advanced Archive found 7 posts!

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That promised weekend wrap-up metapost will be coming soon, but I thought you might enjoy, you know, some comics commentary or something. I had originally planned to skip over the comics from the days I was away, but of course I had to read them to catch up, and some of them just called to me, so here are the highlights of all the stuff I missed. (Sorry in advance if I step on anyone’s snark, I haven’t had time to go over the weekend’s 1000+ comments in depth…)

They’ll Do It Every Time, 6/22/07

Yeah, I know, this one’s from Friday, but faithful reader anne failed to tell me in advance that “Anne D.” was her! So, enjoy another moment in Curmudgeonly TDIET domination.

Archie, 6/23/07

You know, I don’t think we give the Archie Joke-Generating Laugh Unit 3000 enough credit. If you gave a mere human the task of of creating a comic strip in which a teenage boy sprays a sexy teenage girl with a hose but which is nevertheless entirely homoerotic in subtext, he or she would invariably stalk off, proclaiming loudly that such a thing is impossible. The AJGLU 3000 merely churns through data and chugs forward implacably to its programmed destination.

Crankshaft, 6/24/07

“Yeah, see, we call them that because sooner or later one of them is going to have a massive myocardial infarction right there in the booth. Ha ha! Hopefully I won’t be on duty when that happens, ’cause they’d probably make me help move the corpse.”

Mary Worth, 6/24/07

This may be the most frankly sexual Mary Worth (and is there a more disturbing four-word sequence in the English language?) in the strip’s long history. Dr. Jeff’s attempts offer up his son has a substitute object of Mary’s affections are quickly quashed. Mary then goes on at great length about her plans to pimp the junior Dr. Corey out to every woman at the party; she’s so excited at the prospect that her ascot has been knocked askew. Dr. Jeff, while obviously proud of his son’s virility and sexual fitness, expresses his concern over the young fellow’s man-whoring. To cap things off, we get the image of a bee pollinating a flower, soon to fly off to another, illustrating Drew’s “love ’em and leave ’em” policy in one of the most discomfort-inducing metaphorical fashions possible (presumably instead of spreading pollen from blossom to blossom, he brings chlamydia instead). Will Vera’s womanly parts be the hive that will trap this bee with its sweet, sweet honey? Stay tuned!

Rex Morgan, M.D., 6/24/07

The most awesome thing about this Rex Morgan is that every single thing that Hugh is saying is in fact 100 percent demonstrably true, and yet he’s being drawn like a paranoid lunatic drama queen. Panel four, in which he waves his highly trained pointing figure around while he stares goggle-eyed and shouts accusations at nobody in particular, with June rolling her eyes in contempt, is particularly choice. Heather can only defuse the situation by again busting out the “Boo hoo my poor rich husband is dead or possibly floating in the icy North Atlantic” waterworks, which strategy will presumably have diminishing returns.

Gil Thorp, 6/25/07

OH MY GOD CLAMBAKE IS A FRAUD! I’m more than a little embarrassed to admit that I didn’t see this coming at all. I’m looking forward to the shocking revelation that not only was he never in the Negro Leagues, but he’s really just a Greek guy with a good tan!

Sally Forth, 6/25/07

I swear to God, the first time I looked at this, I though Sally’s thought balloon read “I wonder how high I could get before losing my job.”

Ralph, meanwhile, is fooling nobody by poking at a keyboard that isn’t attached to anything. “Easy Ralph … easy … she’ll forget you’re here in a minute … then uncross her ankles … that’s right … any minute now…”

Wizard of Id, 6/25/07

Ha ha! Id is an absolute monarchy and the king’s power isn’t checked by any other institution or law, so he can order the gruesome torture of any of his subjects for the slightest of insults! Ha! The press secretary’s arms have probably both popped out of their sockets, and he’ll die in agony over a series of days! Ah, whimsy.

Gasoline Alley, 6/26/07

Gasoline Alley has been so breathtakingly dull lately, what with plots about sleep apnea and tinnitus by turns, that I haven’t felt the urge to note its continued existence for the last seven months. Today looks promising, however, as it seems to herald the beginning of a new story about how awful it is when black people move into the neighborhood.

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Gil Thorp, 7/11/07

Ha ha! Oh, man, the Gil Thorp summer hijinks are getting started even more quickly than I could have hoped! I’m totally in love with Gail Martin, the “rock and roll Carole King,” as she was called yesterday; truly, nothing shouts “rock and roll” like a collared shirt and a long braid that you clutch dramatically to your chest while you belt out your non-hits and your banjo player grooves behind you. This looks exactly like the kind of scene where a brawl would break out, and I look forward to tomorrow’s weirdly proportioned and strangely angled fisticuffs. Since Kelly has a troubled past with guys with rage issues, this should provide excellent fuel for one of the eleven rapidly crosscut dramas that will be entertaining us until football practice starts up again.

Apartment 3-G, 7/11/07

Ruby’s dialogue says “funny Texan with more realistic ideals of beauty than these supposedly sophisticated New York City girls,” but her solemn expression in panel three, along with Tommie and Margo’s panicked exchange of glances, says “violent feederism.” In two weeks, look for the two of them to be tied to their chairs, their faces smeared with tangy barbecue sauce, begging for mercy, as Ruby says, “Nuh-uh, Maggie, you still only got one chin!”

Ziggy, 7/11/07

If you thought that the sight of a desperate, insane, bald dwarf with no pants jabbering about the dishonesty of inanimate objects while thrusting a fifteen-year-old household appliance at bemused service worker wouldn’t be funny, well, today’s Ziggy is here to be prove you wrong. I actually laughed aloud at this. Ziggy may continue to exist, as far as I’m concerned.

As I look at it more, I’m sort of hypnotized by the text in Ziggy’s word balloon. The symmetry between the sentence-initial “i” (lowercase, in defiance of all known typographical conventions) and the final exclamation mark, makes it look like he’s actually shouting “T lies!” in Spanish. Which, for my money, is even funnier.

Luann, 7/11/07

I’m only marginally less sick of Brad-Toni than I am of Curtis-Michelle, but this sequence is growing on me. If Toni ends up running off with uberskeeze TJ because of his cooking (or “cooking”) skills, I will be willing to forgive a lot that’s happened in the last few years.

Dick Tracy, 7/11/07

It just wouldn’t be Dick Tracy if the payoff didn’t include somebody writhing around in pain. This isn’t the optimistic fantasy land of Mark Trail; those eyes aren’t growing back.

Family Circus, 7/11/07

Hmm, what’s the most alarming part of this? Yeah, I’m going to have to say that it’s Big Daddy Keane’s little smile.

Gasoline Alley, 7/11/07

Gasoline Alley: the one comic strip that isn’t afraid to show you how the system is stacked against the white man.

Spider-Man, 7/11/07

In a strip that brought us such epic battles as Dr. Octopus vs. his television, Spidey vs. a bowl-hatted butler, Spidey vs. his own outdated ideas of economics and gender, and, of course Spidey vs. a brick, today’s struggle between J. Jonah Jameson and Larry King may represent a dramatic zenith.

And, finally, I’m sure sexy toast-eating is somebody’s fetish, so:

Panel from Rex Morgan, M.D., 7/11/07

Go to town, perverts!

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Gasoline Alley, 7/27/07

For the last several years — or, oh, let’s say decades — Gasoline Alley has been guilty of crimes against humor, the comics medium, and its own storied history; the “Slim keeps his neighborhood white with a meteorite he bought on eBay” is only the latest outrage, though it is by no means the worst. Much of these transgressions are unforgivable, but perhaps we can accept as a mitigating factor the fact that this hippie/’Nam vet/militia type just referred to a course of action that might lead to incarceration as “jaily”, which may be the most delightful new adjective I’ve encountered all week. I don’t really live a life of danger on the edge of the law, but I will try to use the word “jaily” in conversation as often as possible — or, if circumstances dictate, “finey” or “community servicey”.

Gil Thorp, 7/27/07

Never mind Coach Kaz’s false modesty, or Kelly’s brutally honest assessment of his earning potential. What the hell happened to our soda jerker’s chin in panel one? It looks like he’s all bandaged up there. Did Kaz get him with an uppercut just to keep in practice for when the next drunken lout comes along? Or did he hit his chin on the counter when he emerged from the time vortex that brought him and his little paper hat here from 1958?

Mary Worth, 7/27/07

Dawn’s sitting on the world’s smallest saddle, but that’s OK because she’s also sitting on the world’s smallest horse. I’m no equestrianologist, but I’m pretty sure that a horse’s head is usually larger than a human’s head. I do note that you can’t see the horses from the withers down, which may indicate that they’re made of fiberglass, perched atop a giant spring, and sitting in front of a Wal-Mart.

Meanwhile, in panel one, Mary waves at a total stranger in a desperate attempt to stop talking to Wilbur.

Mark Trail, 7/27/07

Ohmygosh, do you think he’s going to release more birds soon? THE SUSPENSE IS KILLING ME!

Hey, everybody, my mom’s coming to visit for the weekend, so posts might be a little sparse on the ground for the next few days. COTWs coming on schedule Sunday, though, don’t you worry about it!

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Gasoline Alley, 8/16/07

Those of you who only follow Gasoline Alley through this blog have probably been wondering, “Gee, what’s going on with Slim’s plan to keep his neighborhood racially pure by dropping thousands of pounds of metal onto a playground? I’m sure he’s totally stepped back from the brink by this point!” Well, I’m sad to report that not so much. In today’s strip, the deranged Vietnam Vet charged with actually perpetrating this vile crime muses grimly on the mercenary’s creed: once that check clears, you have a job to do, and it doesn’t matter how many flattened homes and crushed bodies you leave in your wake.

Gil Thorp, 8/16/07

Today’s Gil Thorp is nothing less than a divine symphony of severed limbs. You cannot convince me that any of the arms on display here are actually attached to the Thorpian quasihumans near whose heads they’re hovering — the scale and the angles are all wrong. Particularly baffling is the behemoth paw in panel one. Is Fu “Rap Sheet” Manchu supposed to be holding a TV remote? It seems unlikely: not only is the hand bigger than his head, but he’s only about eight inches away from the television set.

I love that, having been insulted, Coach Kaz calls his girlfriend to “check in” emotionally, only to be further taunted for his dimwittery. FEEL THE BURN, COACH! She’s not dating you for your mind; she only loves your hairy, hairy arms, and the furious fists at the end of them.

Marmaduke, 8/16/07

Like a lot of Marmadukes, this one doesn’t make any damn sense. It could be sort of fixed, though, if the caption were changed to “Your lap’s so nice, he thinks he’s died and gone to heaven!” Get it? Because with Marmaduke’s drooping extremities and slack features, it appears that this hapless woman has the enormous corpse of a Great Dane sprawled across her thighs!

Of course, we all know that, thanks to Marmaduke’s many sins, he won’t actually go to heaven when he dies.

Ziggy, 8/16/07

Looks like somebody doesn’t really understand what “computer dating” is all about. Hey, Tom II, get with the program! You can have your very own computer in your very own home these days! I don’t want to say this cartoon is entirely inaccurate, though: it is true that the only women who would deign to date Ziggy are in prison.

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Apartment 3-G, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s sudden out-of-character shifts in affection just to keep the plot churning along comics!

Blondie, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s deliberately misunderstanding unnecessarily ambiguous grammar for a “laugh” comics!

Beetle Bailey, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s deliberately misunderstanding unnecessarily ambiguous grammar for a “laugh” comics, with overtones of bondage!

Gasoline Alley, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s comics with a well-deserved comeuppance, only we aren’t allowed to see it for some reason, possibly because there’s no justice in this world?

Hi and Lois, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s comics with advice on how to deal with the ongoing collapse of the American housing sector: do all the meth you can while you can still afford it!

Mary Worth, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s unsubtle allusions to erections comics!

Gil Thorp, 8/21/07

Hey, kids! It’s high school never ends comics, with the grown-up jocks bullying the grown-up nerds while … wait, what? Adorable Ben Franklin is the note-leaver? But Gail bought him his van! His van, man! This can’t be right. It’s only Tuesday! There’s more to this, right? There has to be! *Sob*

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Apartment 3-G, 8/24/07

“But if you won’t have dinner with me, I swear to God it’s all you’ll hear about for the next six months. Choose wisely.”

Gasoline Alley, 8/24/07

His elaborate meteorite scheme having failed to rid his neighborhood of African-American youth, Slim resorts to Plan B: Killing and eating them.

Judge Parker, 8/24/07

If Judge Parker went in for dramatic NEXT! boxes like Spider-Man and the Phantom, this strip could have one that read “NEXT! Render unto Caesar!” Or it could just play to its strengths and say “NEXT! More of Trudi’s ass!

Pluggers, 8/24/07

Pluggers are a danger to good, honest citizens, and our weak-kneed liberal court system can’t protect us from them. Vigilante justice is the only answer.

Oh! Also, faithful reader Dub Not Dubya wants you to know that she got that picture of the Ziggyfish that I put up yesterday from this Website, which you should visit if you like pictures of odd-looking animals.

Also also! Chicago-area readers! Would you like to help faithful reader Dingo turn his talent for song parody into a free trip to Austria? You bet you do! Click here for details, and yell loudly!

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Gasoline Alley, 8/25/07

Wow, so who would have guessed that Slim’s descent into madness would have concluded with, you know, an actual descent into actual, clinically diagnosed madness? I have to say that while the recent Slim vs. the Basketball Playing Youth Of Today has been totally demented, it’s at least been kind of interesting, unlike the previous year or so of Gasoline Alley, so I sort of hope that they keep up with the wackiness. If nothing else, every year or so the gentle, good-humored domestic drama and hillbilly-dialect chuckles should be punctuated by Slim’s escape from the asylum, with hundreds of comically inept cops crawling everywhere in a failed attempt to keep him from killing again.

Dick Tracy, 8/25/07

I haven’t attempted to grapple with plot of Dick Tracy on this blog for about eight weeks; just take my word for it when I say that for about seven of those weeks, the same thing barely happened over and over again, then all of the sudden this week all sorts of things started happening, none of which made any sense if you thought about them for more than about thirty seconds. However, I feel that the dialog in today’s first panel — “Tracy! They know we know! They’re ramming us!” — stands on its own as a wonderful little dollop of poetic nonsense. I hope tomorrow one of the bad guys says “Gretchen! They know we know they know! We’re ramming them!” And then it could just go on like that pretty much indefinitely.

Also, in panel three, this is the second time that the Baron has arrived at the Pentagon via cab, and I have no reason to believe that it’s going to be the last.

Spider-Man, 8/25/07

Spider-Man continues to indulge its obsession with crumbling masonry. Perhaps the creators have decided that a renewed focus on our woefully neglected infrastructure is more important than providing the “thrills” and “excitement” that the masses expect from their superhero fare.

Also, I have to say that there’s something poignant about the modesty of the Shocker’s ambitions in panel one. He knows that there’s no chance of breaking into the big supervillain scene in New York or DC; he’d just be happy if people in San Francisco and LA, and maybe even Portland and Seattle, hear “the Shocker” and think not “obscene hand gesture” but “that mattress-wearing weirdo who robbed a bank.”

B.C., 8/25/07

Also, Clumsy, you’re not … bald? I mean, you’re not, right? As near as I can tell? I know we’re just plugging new jokes into old art, but couldn’t we at least have the same person picking out the jokes and the art?

Wizard of Id, 8/25/07

Ho ho ho! Id is an Orwellian police state, so dominated by the Panopticon-style omnipresence of its security apparatus that it resembles nothing so much as a vast gulag! Ah, whimsy!

Garfield, 8/25/07

This is pretty much the funniest Garfield that’s appeared in weeks. It’s about vomiting.