Archive: Beetle Bailey

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Mark Trail, 5/9/17

Each of these law enforcement officers is all man, of course: you can tell by their rugged features and aggressively retreating hairlines. But it seems they’re the last bastion of traditional American can-do masculinity in this sadly enfeebled police force. They should be out there rounding up known scumbags and maybe busting a head or two in the interrogation room in order to track down these kidnappers, but instead they’re sitting around the office waiting for the fancy college-boy “analysts” to pinpoint what’s “weird” about the criminals’ “body language” like they work at Us Magazine, for Pete’s sake! Hurry it up in there, brainiacs, Mark can’t keep up his soothing baritone monologue for much longer!

Spider-Man, 5/9/17

Oh, man, remember the greatest Newspaper Spider-Man storyline of all time, when Aunt May wanted to marry the Mole-Man and Spidey tried various techniques to thwart their love but eventually the nuptials had to be called off because Aunt May developed Spelunker’s Lung and couldn’t serve as queen of her beloved’s cave-kingdom? Welp, it looks like Mole-Man has finally decided he needs to see his ex again, if only to know that she’s happy, and since Aunt May has no Instagram for him to stalk, he’s got to do the logical thing: follow her to Los Angeles, keeping a low profile by dressing like a dwarfish pimp, and stare at her longingly through the window of a restaurant that’s recently rebranded itself to cash in on La La Land fever. Sadly, one of LA’s omnipresent Beefy Restaurant Security Guys is going to escalate this situation into an unnecessary mole-fracas.

Beetle Bailey, 5/9/17

I’m not sure who exactly this joke is for. Is it meant to prompt legacy comics trufans into knowing grins as they think to themselves “Ah, yes, Beetle Bailey and Lois Flagston are siblings, one of the comics’ lesser-known trivia items”? Is there a Walker-Browne Amalgamated Humor Industries LLC company-wide policy on occasionally reminding readers of this, so as to lay the groundwork for the Bailey-Flagston Cinematic Universe franchise they’re very much hoping to sell to a major studio? All I know is that this postal worker is justifiably horrified to learn about the abuse and bullying that are sadly rife in our armed forces.

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No Star Wars puns from me this May the Fourth — isn’t that worth a couple bucks? I thought so!

Pluggers, 5/4/17

Not sure what they’re going for here: “Pluggers want all of technology’s benefits with none of the intellectual investment?” “Pluggers parade their ignorance as a point of pride?” “Pluggers are lazy hypocrites?” “Pluggers’ wives are somehow not pluggers?”

Wait, they’re at a bookstore? Ha, ha what a couple of pluggers!

Blondie, 5/4/17

Ha, ha tech and teh olds LMAO.

Beetle Bailey, 5/4/17

Ha, ha tech and teh olds LMAO.

Six Chix, 5/4/17

Six Chix rotates through a roster of six woman author/artists on weekdays, and separately on Sundays — sort of like girls’ softball in Gil Thorp. Here’s the current lineup, highlighting a couple of recent changes:

Monday:  Original Chik Isabella Bannerman
Tuesday:  Martha Gradisher, replacing Original Chik Margaret Shulock, of Apartment 3-G fame, on her retirement in March. Congratulations and best wishes to Ms. Shulock, a long-time Comics Curmudgeon reader and all-round good sport.
Wednesday:  Susan Camilleri Konar, who replaced Original Chik Rina Piccolo, author/artist of Tina’s Groove, last October.
Thursday:  Anne Gibbons, veteran since 2007
Friday:  Benita Epstein, veteran since 2009
Saturday:  Original Chik Stephanie Piro

The rotation gimmick is really clever: at its best, it lets each Chik contribute fresh work without the pressure of daily deadlines. But at its worst, it lets the strip become an afterthought, with dashed-off artwork supporting a weak concept. A lot of recent strips boil down to “look at this thing I don’t like!”, punctuated by a knowing glance between the characters or at the audience.

Maybe before publishing one of these, the Chix should apply a variant of the Bechdel Test: if two woman characters are talking, and it’s not about men, is it about anything else?

Hm, I seem to be posting a lot of Pluggers this week. It can’t possibly mean anything, though.

–Uncle Lumpy

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Panels from Hagar the Horrible, 4/23/17

Hagar and his clan may have recently converted to Christianity, but that doesn’t meant they don’t occasionally dabble in a little paganistic future-scrying now and then.

Panels from Beetle Bailey, 4/23/17

File today’s Beetle Bailey dialogue under “phrases that no human being has ever actually said aloud and yet will haunt me for days.”

Panels from Blondie, 4/23/17

If there’s a sadder commentary on what passes for pleasure in this modern age, I don’t know what it is!