Archive: Barney Google & Snuffy Smith

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Pluggers, 6/10/22

I have been writing this blog for far too many years, and a trend that I have noticed over that entire period is that syndicated newspaper comics have always felt like they need to be doing something to keep up with “the modern world” in some way. It keeps not working, but also there have continued to be syndicated newspaper comics for that entire period as well, so maybe they don’t, in fact, have to do anything at all, but their attempts are inevitably pretty funny. For instance, way back in 2006, For Better Or For Worse (only real ones will remember the Foobs) started posting animated versions of the strips on its website, except these were the same strips that went to physical newspapers where animation wouldn’t work so the only animation was that the characters would blink, and fairly slowly, so you could miss it and then see it out of the corner of your eye and be like “What the fuck was that, am I going crazy, are these people moving????” It wasn’t great! It wasn’t great for a number of reasons, not least of which is that the idea was planted that maybe some other cartoonist would try this stunt, and that they might try it at any time: that some image you assumed was static would suddenly start moving. This would be unsettling at any time, of course, but with some strips it would be much, much more traumatizing than others.

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 6/10/22

In order to experience the round of inflation that rest of us are all going through, Hootin’ Holler would have to be connected to global supply chains and the worldwide central banking systems, which we all know is absolutely not the case. I assume this is just a coincidence and what actually happened is that a plane crashed on the edge of town that had a cargo hold full of $100 bills, or possibly Chuck E. Cheese ski-ball tickets.

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Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 6/7/22

I assumed that the distant “Newnited States government” to which Hootin’ Holler owes vague allegiance long ago dispensed with the archaic trial by jury system, but it seems that they’re giving it another go. And who in the Holler is more Snuffy’s “peer” than his mirror image, the patriarch of the region’s other major clan? Sadly, Snuffy has chosen the worst possible day to bust out this particular defense. He seems to be representing himself, but I don’t think he put a lot of though into voir dire.

Hagar the Horrible, 6/7/22

Sad news: Hagar the Horrible, a respected local Viking chieftain, died today of massive third-degree burns all over his body. He is survived by his wife, his two children, and his warrior band, who are currently leaderless and vulnerable to plundering by their opportunistic rivals. He was 48.

Dennis the Menace, 6/7/22



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Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 5/17/22

Wow, I guess we really are going to get “Snuffy is cruel to his family/Snuff is poor” bits for the rest of the week, huh? Personally, I’m very stuck on poor Loweezy’s face in panel two. I realize that you don’t always feel right as rain after a doctor’s visit, especially from a doctor willing to survive on Medicaid payments and barter, but I’m getting strong and disturbing “Snuffy is bribing Doc Pritchart with an extra stolen chicken in return for poisoning Snuffy’s wife” vibe from it. Think, Snuffy, think! Who’s going to make you cake now?

Blondie, 5/17/22

This is a strip that was clearly created in a white-hot fury by someone who’s just learned that schools don’t use chalkboards anymore and who was so motivated to slam on the dumb kids today that they didn’t even bother finding out what replaced them. Was it texting? Texting, probably? Anyway, in actuality they were replaced by dry-erase whiteboards, something that Dagwood would be pretty familiar with if he worked in an actual office rather than a weird vast open space with shiny floors and the occasional corner.

Dustin, 5/17/22

Much of the job of being a comics curmudgeon involves reading about unpleasant characters over and over and thinking to yourself, “But what specific kind of asshole is this?” In the case of Dustin’s dad, he’s specifically the kind of asshole who doesn’t answer this question with a perfectly reasonably “Yes, please,” or a perfectly reasonable “No, thank you,” but instead with a “Yes, but only so I can experience your culture’s inferiority first hand.”