Archive: Blondie

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Pluggers and Hi and Lois, 11/11/23

Happy Veterans Day, everyone! Do you think the United States is on the verge an apocalyptic war for national survival that will require us to call old men back into military service in a last-ditch and almost certainly doomed effort to fight back the overwhelming force of the enemy? Probably not, right? But still, it’s fun to keep those guys on their toes by hinting that it might be necessary in syndicated newspaper comics, their favorite form of media.

Gil Thorp, 11/11/23

Speaking of grizzled war vets, Gil Thorp apparently fought in the U.S. Army Air Force against the Luftwaffe during World War II, which means that he’s some sort of ageless immortal, which in turn has a lot of implications for any number of Gil Thorp plots. Like his slo-mo ongoing divorce, for instance: sure, it’s painful, but it’s something he has to go through every few decades, before his current wife starts to notice that he looks exactly like he did the day they got married.

Blondie, 11/11/23

Dagwood’s rich parents made sure he never got drafted into World War I or any of the wars that followed it, so no, Blondie will not be acknowledging Veterans Day, thank you very much. Anyway, a big problem with this strip is that the joke is supposed to be that Dagwood is hearing people use “beef” metaphorically and it makes him hungry for an all-beef hamburger patty, but then one of the speakers on TV is named “Mr. Burgomaster,” which kind of implies he’s already watching some kind of burger-themed entertainment, which muddles things, I think. Another problem with it is that it disrespects the troops.

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Blondie, 10/30/23

I had a conversation with a friend the other day about those haunted houses you can go to at amusement parks and such for Halloween, and she drew a distinction that really stuck with me: some stuff you encounter at these things, like decor with skulls and bats and other goth business, is spooky, and other stuff, like people jumping out of the dark and grabbing you, is scary, and not everyone is into both! Anyway, what Blondie experienced — a couple weird cosplayers coming up with a series of ever-dumber Halloween puns — is spooky, whereas Dagwood’s day, in which he once again had to weigh his emotional health against his family’s finances when dealing with his abusive boss, is scary. Here to help!

Crock, 10/30/23

Big news! After 48 years of doing a dumb comics riff on P. C. Wren’s 1924 novel Beaut Geste, as of today Crock will start doing a dumb comics riff on Albert Camus’s 1947 novel The Plague.

Dennis the Menace, 10/30/23

Is it just me or does the perspective in this panel make Dennis look like he’s about seven feet tall, but with the bodily proportions of a child, making him a truly nightmarish figure? Anyway, if I could change one thing about him, it’d be that. I’d like him to be a normal size again.

Mary Worth, 10/30/23

“Ugh, it used to be we would have sex, but now it turns out that people you have sex with sometimes have opinions? That are different from yours??? What the heck!”

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Blondie, 10/28/23

Over the years, the syndicated comic strip Blondie shifted from the story of a carefree flapper and the dissolute failson who gave up his comfortable life to be with her to a story about a suburban dad who makes being hungry his whole personality, to the extent that he redefines the calendar itself so that each holiday primarily exists to provide an opportunity for a new and subtly different form of food monomania. For me, the thing that’s oddest about Blondie is that the universe around Dagwood is seemingly warped by the intensity of his own appetites, making him something of an outlier but by no means an aberration in his own world. Anyway, what do you make of the combo of “smiling and sweating” in the final panel here, as he enjoys this bird’s third weird holiday food ode? Does it represent “horny”? It has to, right? Very dark, in my opinion.

Gasoline Alley, 10/28/23

I hate to praise Rufus and Joel, but their proposal to capture this monstrous talking bear and display him to an amazed and horrified public for their own profit is frankly the most sensible one we’ve heard so far for dealing with this beast.

Six Chix, 10/28/23

Hey, wouldn’t it be interesting if pumpkins, like the ones you gut in order to make jack-o-lanterns, could experience fear, and sadness, and probably physical pain, too? Have a fun Halloween, everybody!